Lord, lead me in the dance!

danceA couple of decades ago I saw an ad that said something like this – “Take dance lessons. She will love it.”  So I signed Bev and myself up for a swing dance class. Really, I did! Our instructors opened the first session by putting on a song and showing us what they hoped to teach us to achieve;  two people, moving as one, gracefully across the floor. I loved the beauty of it. After two frustrating sessions, I gave up and became a class drop-out. Bev could dance, beautifully, and I regret we could never share that joy.

I am told that there are two reasons that I can’t dance.   First, I am self-conscious and won’t just ‘let myself go.’ Second, I am over thinking the dance; trying to break down each movement into tiny parts rather than just moving into the music. To become a good dancer, I’d have to come under the influence of the music as well as becoming more responsive to the movement of my partner.

In case you’re wondering if there is a point to this, let’s get on with it. Living as a Spirit-filled Christian is a kind of ‘dance’ a life lived in synchronized with God’s music and responsive to His lead. The Bible says, (Galatians 5:25) “Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.”  Do you find your Christian life like my experience in that dance class?  I could hear the instructor’s words. I watched them and wanted it but I just could not make it happen.

Do you see some enjoying the joy of the Lord, watch them worship, see their fulfillment and wonder, why can’t I find that rhythm? Some of us just will not let go and let Him lead. We surrender for a moment or a day but quickly return to forcing our own agenda. While others move through life’s difficulties and disappointments, enduring ill health, traffic jams, and overcoming temptation with real grace, we bumble along.

Simon Peter was called by Jesus to become a disciple. For three years, he didn’t get it right. Talk about a man with bad timing. Oh, he tried mightily but, too often, things turned out badly. The low point was the night of Jesus’ arrest and trial. When warned of impending failure by the Lord, Peter insisted that even if the other disciples failed, “I never will!”  “Ah,” Jesus said sadly, “but you will, Peter. Before the rooster announces the dawn, you will deny me three times.”  A few hours later as Jesus was being arrested, Peter pulled out his sword and made an attempt at defending his Friend, succeeding only in cutting off a man’s ear, which Jesus promptly healed, as He told Peter, “Put that thing away!” And, later that same night, in the grip of panic in the courtyard of the high priest’s house, Peter was cursing and swearing while emphatically declaring, “I tell you, I never knew him!”

Fifty days later, at Pentecost, we meet a transformed man in Acts, a man dancing with the Spirit!  Empowered, Peter provided leadership to the emerging group of followers of Jesus, explained the Scripture, preached on the street, and courageously faced the enemies of the Jesus movement. With grace and beauty we watch him lead the Church. How does the Bible account for the difference? Acts 4:8 sums it up, saying “Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, … “   The life and music of the Spirit filled him up and he began to dance gracefully under the Spirit’s influence, moving to the rhythms of Heaven. When he came to the end of himself, when he was crushed beyond hope, God came with the outpouring of His Spirit. From that day, Peter danced. Yes, he made mistakes now and again, but he was a man of grace and power, who spread the message of Jesus and life across the world!

Yesterday, in a time of prayer with 3 other local pastors, I asked them to pray for me as I try to find a life without Bev, my wife, who went to Heaven 18 months ago. It’s been a time of ‘lostness’ for me.  As we prayed, I felt an impression to get on my knees instead of remaining seated like the others. It felt strange, but I followed the impression. The prayers continued and I knelt there praying softly in the Spirit, a kind of desperation driving my prayer.  Then there was another impression – “Hush!”  I stopped saying anything, waiting quietly and then suddenly …  it is hard to describe … I was enveloped in His Presence. The voices of my fellow Pastor disappeared, and I was lost in a place of safety, peace – almost as if I were sleeping, yet awake.  In a few moments I returned to conscious awareness of the room, where the others were still praying, but I felt as if I had slept an entire night, so rested.  An interesting secondary effect was that my knees that had been very painful for several days were no longer giving me any pain!  The sense of peace and rest persisted for the entire day! To enjoy that small blessed experience, I had to follow His lead.

Are you ‘keeping step with the Spirit,’ or are you stumbling and bumbling, from fall to failure?

Listen to the music of the Spirit. Give yourself over to His lead. Be filled! And, start to dance!

Here is a word from the Word. “Once when Jesus (post Resurrection) was eating with them, he commanded them, “Do not leave Jerusalem until the Father sends you the gift he promised, as I told you before. John baptized with water, but in just a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” So when the apostles were with Jesus, they kept asking him, “Lord, has the time come for you to free Israel and restore our kingdom?” He replied, “The Father alone has the authority to set those dates and times, and they are not for you to know. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:4-8, NLT)

Let Him lead;  Lord of the dance!

____________

Spirit Of The Living God  (worship as you listen)

Spirit of the living God
Spirit of the living God
We only want to hear Your voice
We’re hanging on ev’ry word
Spirit of the living God
Spirit of the living God
We want to know You more and more
We’re hanging on ev’ry word

 Come and speak to us O Lord
Cause when You speak and when You move
When You do what only You can do
It changes us
It changes what we see and what we seek
When You come in the room
When You do what only You can do

It changes us
It changes what we see and what we seek
You’re changing ev’rything 

Spirit of the living God
Spirit of the living God
We’re leaning in to all You are
Ev’rything else can wait
Spirit of the living God
Spirit of the living God
Come now and breathe upon our hearts
Come now and have Your way

 When You move You move all our fears
When You move You move us to tears
When You move You move all our fears

When You move You move us to tears
When You fall we fall on our knees
When You fall we fall at Your feet
And when You fall we fall on our knees
And when You fall we fall at Your feet yeah

 Spirit of the living God
Spirit of the living God
We only want to hear Your voice
We’re hanging on ev’ry word

Jacob Sooter | Mia Fieldes © 2014 All Essential Music (Admin. by Essential Music Publishing LLC) Be Essential Songs (Admin. by Essential Music Publishing LLC)

CCLI License # 810055

Jerry D. Scott, Pastor
Faith Discovery Church
www.FaithDiscovery.com

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