A Time to Dance



1 To everything there is a season,
      A time for every purpose under heaven: 
       2 A time to be born, 
And a time to die; 
      A time to plant, 
And a time to pluck what is planted; 
       3 A time to kill, 
And a time to heal; 
      A time to break down, 
And a time to build up; 
       4 A time to weep, 
And a time to laugh; 
      A time to mourn,
And a time to dance…   Ecclesiastes 3

I was walking from the kitchen to my study a moment ago. It is early here in Alabama. Six a.m. 

La, la, la, la, la, la, la, la, la, la, la….I found myself singing. And then I thought “I feel like dancing.” I considered making a little twirl through the den, but then I thought about the half-full coffee cup that I had in my hand. Better not.

Having just written about how there is a time to mourn, I realized that maybe today I should write on the time to dance.

Is dancing evil as some suggest? Is there a place for dancing in our private celebrations? Is there a place for dancing in the church?

Dancing is one of the things that some of the body of Christ has allowed to be stolen from its expressions of worship. We sterilize our mental pictures of what it looked like when Jesus went to the Synagogue. It was all serious, right?  Actually the Jewish worship and Jewish life of Jesus’ time was filled with celebration and dancing. They knew how to have a good party – at God’s command.

2 Samuel 6:14 says that King David danced before the Lord with all his might. Literally, he twirled around as the ark was brought back to Jerusalem. There was reason to celebrate.

I have some old 8 mm tapes of my childhood. One of them is a recording of me doing the twist. Now for those of you too young to know what the twist is, maybe you should pull it up on YouTube. Chubby Checker recorded a song called The Twist back in 1960, and it became a dancing sensation. The song topped the charts and then was re-released in ’61-’62 and topped the charts again. A whole list of songs about the twist followed. Interestingly, Chubby lost 30 pounds demonstrating his song!

Anyway, back to my point, I was about 3 or 4 in this recording and my daddy was cheering me on while I unashamedly did the twist. I was smiling and twisting. Little girls love to dance for their daddies.

Somehow we have been duped into thinking that if the world incorrectly uses something, then we, as God’s children, had better stay far away from it. But I find that the scripture teaches us that Satan is an imitator. He steals from God’s legitimate gifts and perverts them. But there is a legitimate expression of the gift.

Is dance a legitimate expression of love, joy, celebration, and worship? 

Well, I remember thinking a few years ago that I made a better Charismatic than a Baptist (I have been both and actually am now something of a combination) because I could dance in church! Having been a cheerleader in high school and the president of the Pep Club, I could jump, shout, and dance with the best of them. But I had never, ever danced in church.

My daughter recently got married and we had a dance after the ceremony. She and her new husband had the first dance. Then she waltzed with her daddy. And on it went from there. We just had a genuinely good time enjoying the atmosphere of love and celebration. I had several people comment to me that it was the most “fun” wedding they had ever attended. From the very young to the very old, we celebrated together with food, fun, fellowship and dance.

There are times when there is no better way to express the joy inside your heart than to dance. Maybe dancing is one expression of a body, soul, and spirit in union.

Hey, we have a Waltzing class beginning at church next week and I hear that the instructors might work in a little line dancing, too. I signed up. I found out at my daughter’s wedding that my friends – from young to old –  had held out on me. When the young people broke into the Electric Slide, my friends, old and young, knew how to slide. I felt duped! But I decided to give it a try. It was just fun. We all enjoyed a real celebration together. 

Personally, I am so glad that a time to mourn is followed by a time to dance. There are real, necessary expressions of sorrow and real, necessary expressions of joy.

Well, I’m finished with my coffee so maybe I’ll just twirl a little. After all, daddies love to see their little girls dance and my heavenly Daddy is watching. 


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  1. Song says:

    Again, great finish. Makes the piece very circular. Is it okay that I comment on your writing style sometimes, instead of your content? It always speaks for itself!

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