Monday, November 28, 2011

Dancing a jig for Jesus!

Being a sailor was a lonely life. Men would spend weeks, often months at sea, only anchoring in ports long enough to get supplies and be on their way again.  When they weren't on duty, they found ways to entertain themselves during long voyages. They would drink and play cards, write letters to their sweethearts, but more often then not, they would sing and dance. Usually there was at least one person on board who could play an instrument. In good weather, sailors would gather around on the main deck, and sing along to the music and dance with each other!

Dancing throughout the ages has been an expression of joy, happiness, and romance. In native cultures, dancing could also be an expression of virility or power over one's enemies or a way a please a god.  There are many references in the Bible to dancing. God's people often danced out of joy, awe, and worship of God.

King David was no exception. When he brought the ark of the covenant back into Jerusalem, he led the joyful procession by dancing before the Lord.

Then David danced before the LORD with all his might; and David was wearing a linen ephod.  So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouting and with the sound of the trumpet  2 Samuel 6:14-15

Here was the King of Israel, the most mighty, powerful man in the entire kingdom and he had stripped down to a simple undergarment and was dancing like a crazy man. I love this about David. He wasn't into status or position. He didn't care what anyone thought of him! He just wanted to glorify God.

Can we say the same thing? Are we willing to be made a fool for Jesus?  Or do we shrink back from expressing our joy, our worship of God when we are among people who wouldn't understand? People who might laugh at us or make fun of us. Why is it acceptable to paint your face blue, go to a football game half naked and shout and carry on for your team, but when a Christian raises his hands in worship and shouts hallelujah or--shock of all shockers--he or she dances in joy, why does the world snicker and belittle that person?

And more importantly, why should we care?

Now as the ark of the LORD came into the City of David, Michal, Saul’s daughter, looked through a window and saw King David leaping and whirling before the LORD; and she despised him in her heart. . . .And Michal the daughter of Saul came out to meet David, and said, “How glorious was the king of Israel today, uncovering himself today in the eyes of the maids of his servants, as one of the base fellows shamelessly uncovers himself!”

David's wife, Michal, was embarrassed of her husband. She thought that as a king, he should act more dignified and regal. She was worried that her maids would sneer at him and think less of him as a king and a man.  I've met many people like this, haven't you? It's all about appearances, their shiny cars, fancy houses, what so and so thinks of them, how many prestigious social clubs they belong to, and of course how many important people they know. You want to know something? God doesn't care one fig for any of those things.

I love David's reaction:

David retorted to Michal, “I was dancing before the Lord, who chose me above your father and all his family! He appointed me as the leader of Israel, the people of the Lord, so I celebrate before the Lord.  Yes, and I am willing to look even more foolish than this, even to be humiliated in my own eyes!  2 Samuel 6:21-22

Take that, Michal!  David loved God so much, he could have cared less what people thought of him. He intended to dance and sing and worship God with all his might even if the entire kingdom thought he was a fool!

I wish we all had the mind of David!  And not the mind of Michal. God was not pleased with her attitude for she put man's approval above God's. So Michal, the daughter of Saul, remained childless throughout her entire life.  2 Samuel 6:23
So shove aside your inhibitions! Sweep away your need for man's approval. Focus on God and God alone and on how wonderful and loving and good He is, and then dance a jig for Jesus!  I guarantee He will be pleased!


  1. Mon Nov 28th,
    "Morning, MaryLu."
    (Second attempt at trying to leave a message on this blog.)
    Thanks for a great message today ... but oh, still ... to get back to caring more about what the Lord thinks, than mankind. To honour and praise and worship ... in song and dance ... with the faith and heart of 'a child' ... who only wants to please "Him" ! (And not worrying about what everyone else is thinking.)
    Great message. Thanks so much for sharing ! I still have so much to learn, and, a long way to go.
    Take care, and, God Bless,
    In Him, Brenda Hurley

  2. We all have much to learn, Brenda!! It'll take a lifetime and more to become more like God. :-)
    Hope all is well with you!!!

  3. Great post! It's really hard to step out of our 'comfort zone', but once we do, it gets easier and easier to do. I remember being so sheepish, but now, I've noticed that God has given me a voice for Him. Very liberating. :)

  4. I think our fear of rejection and what other people might think really has crippled Christians from being the best worshippers and followers of Christ. Isn't revering what people might say and think a form of idolatry? I mean, we are putting those as a higher priority than God, and thats a big no-no. Plus, its plain messed up! I meet sooooo many people who are like Michal (my grandparents, for one), and I have to admit, sometimes I'm like that too. This post was a real eye-opener. Thank you dearly for posting it!

  5. Amen! Wonderful post, MaryLu. It is sad at how easy it is to be a Michal. I have to remind myself constantly to keep my eyes heavenward, and do not look to this world for approval. This world hates Christ. Naturally, they are not going to have loving feeling towards his true followers either.

    I have always liked king David. I love how God always uses imperfect people, who make huge mistakes, to show us His mercy and forgiveness.

  6. Yes, Debbie, me too. At first I was very self-conscious about how I worshiped in church or even how I spoke out in the world.. now I'm much more free with my celebrations of Jesus!

    Eszter, absolutely.. fear of man is an idol. Anything above God is an idol. We are all guilty of doing this. I want to be more like David!

    Emma, yes the world will hate us.. which is why it really shouldn't matter what they say about us shouting and singing and dancing for the Lord. People do it all the time at sporting events, why not for God?

    Thanks Ladies for your insightful comments!

  7. A very timely post, MaryLu - as usual! :-) God has really been challenging me to step out of my comfort zone and take risks lately (namely, witnessing to a few of my college *professors* - quite scary!), and this was very encouraging to me.

  8. Oh, that warms my heart, Sapphire.. I'm so glad the Lord used me to help you. Believe me, I needed to hear this too! :-)

  9. "Why is it acceptable to paint your face blue, go to a football game half naked and shout and carry on for your team, but when a Christian raises his hands in worship and shouts hallelujah or--shock of all shockers--he or she dances in joy, why does the world snicker and belittle that person?"

    So true. I've thought about this a lot in the past. I think it's because we have this idea that if you're a Christian, you're supposed to be serious, pious, holy. We forget that God made dancing and music and beauty.

    Great food for thought. Thanks for sharing! :)