I’ve been thinking lately about what makes a dance “complete.” When is it ready to minister? How do you know? What activities are critical to have in place before we minister?
What prompted this was rewatching a dance I ministered at my church last year at Pentecost. There are some beautiful moments where I see the joy of the Lord on my face and see His beauty and anointing on the choreography. There are other moments when I can see uncertainty on my face and, honestly, I feel nervous watching. myself dance because I can see I was uncertain about the movements.
In contrast, I had a sense of completion after dancing to What Child is This? on Christmas Eve at the same church. I knew I had completed my assignment, and I had a sense that the congregation was blessed. I was fully present to the congregation and to the Lord as I danced.
The responses I received to both dances were quite different. I actually had someone come up to me after the dance at Pentecost and say, with a chuckle, “I liked your dance. It reminded of those hippies at Woodstock.” I’m not kidding. This was a new believer. I knew right then that my dance had not hit its mark with him. Another person asked, “Where did you learn to dance?” and still another, “What type of dance was that?”
I’m not saying the Pentecost dance was bad or even that it was without effect, simply that it was incomplete.
In contrast, on Christmas Eve, I could sense the congregation was moved and experienced joy when I danced, that they entered more fully into the Christmas story, having seen an embodiment of the incredible story of Christmas. I did not need to receive verbal feedback. I sensed the dance had done its work, or rather that the Lord had worked through it.
So, what makes one dance complete and another incomplete?
Here is what came to me, as I reflected:
- The movements have become part of us. We are sufficiently rehearsed that the choreography is in our muscle memory. Or we have spent enough time in personal worship so that inspired movements come to us in the moment.
- We have prayed over the lyrics and they have become part of us. When we move, we are connected with the words and the message of the song and so can lean into the movements as a way to communicate these.
- We have prayed for the congregation, considered their needs, even received a word or picture from the Lord about what He might want to do through our dance.
- We have released the results to the Lord. We don’t need to please or impress people or prove ourselves. Our hearts are focused on pleasing him and we give it our all, not worrying about what others will think. We are free now to dance for the joy of it, trusting Him to do as He pleases with our offering.
You can watch both dances here:
I’d love to hear from you.
- Do you see these differences in the dances?
- Can you add anything to my list?
- Do you think that it’s possible for every dance we offer to be fully “complete” before we minister?