Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Dance Like No One Is Watching...

We've all seen the expression splashed across cute painted boards in the back of discount stores. Everytime I see one, I secretly want to buy it, because I can relate to it. I feel it, I've always felt it, ever since I was a little girl I have always felt like dancing.
When I was 5 years old, my sister and I began ballet classes. We lived in England at the time and our classes were held on the top floor of an old building. I vividly remember the sound of many little feet thumping up the narrow staircase, the single door at the top of the stairs that opened into a huge room with glossy wooden floors. Bright walls were lined with metal heaters and tall windows with flaky white window sills shone in the afternoon sun. If I close my eyes, I can hear the music and the sweet voice of our teacher, "...plie, 1, 2, 3...up, 1, 2, 3...", clapping out the rythm. Then, suddenly, the classes stopped. I found out much later that my older sister disliked the classes, and convinced my Mom we were afraid of the teacher and didn't want to go back.
It would be another 7 years before I took an actual dance class, but who needs a classroom to dance? I bought my first "record" at a garage sale when I was 8 years old; Don McLean's American Pie. I didn't have a clue what the lyrics meant, but I danced my little dark blue polyester bell bottoms all over the house. At 11 yrs, I was in love with the old Elvis stuff, and I had several of his albums; my sister laughed as I danced around to Blue Suede shoes as if it were a new hit.
By the time I hit 13, we'd moved to El Paso, TX and I had become well acquainted with the "gypsy" side of my family - belly dancers, artists and musicians. My Aunt owned a dance studio and in exchange for babysitting I could take any classes I chose. Everyday after school I headed to the studio to Pirouette in Ballet, shimmy and shake during Middle Eastern Belly, get wild with Afro Cuban, be free with Modern, or groove with Jazz. I was totally in my element - dance, dance, dance! As a teen, my Friday nights were spent at the disco across the border with friends, dancing to Men at Work, The Talking Heads and the B52's until curfew drove me home...

Then life began, I graduated, I got a job, I became a wife, became a Mommy, and the living room became my dance floor once again...then I became a Christian.
It was then that I was faced with a big problem. Was it ok to want to move like that? I mean, when I hear music, I yearn to move, to fly, to dance, to kick and turn and wiggle and groove; just about any beat of music makes me want to get on my feet. But let's face it, dance is exhibitory; the more you move, the more you draw attention to your body,...hmmm, not so good for a Christian woman.
I began to wonder how this all fits in with Christianity. Would God approve of my desire to express myself through dance?
Exodus 15-20 ~ "Miriam...took the timbrel in her hand, and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dancing."
Jeremiah 31-13 ~ "Then the virgin will rejoice in the dance, and the young men..."
Luke 15:25 ~ "...he came and approached the house, he heard music and dancing."
2 Samuel 6:14~ "And David was dancing before the Lord with all his might..."
Ecclesiastes 3:4 ~ "...A time to mourn and a time to dance."
I've learned that when I dance to praise music, I'm praising the Lord with my body, He doesn't care if I wiggle and twist and turn, He just sees my heart.
So here I am "40-ish", I started 2 new dance classes last night. I'm not terribly out of shape, but my body is aching in places I didn't even know I had muscles. I'm not 16 anymore! No, these classes aren't set to praise music, but it's clean, and it's fun, just a handful of ladies who want to move. I believe God put this desire inside of me, and I like to think He smiles and laughs when He sees me as that 5 year old girl, dancing around...
Dance -
1. To move rythmically to music.
2. To leap or skip about.
3. To bob up and down.
Crank up the music today and DANCE!

9 comments:

  1. I just signed Alexis up for a Jazz class and noticed that they have an adult hip hop class. Now hip hop is NOT my thing but It got me thinking. I never really took dance, I was too tom boyish but secretly I've always wanted to be able to dance. If they had an adult dance class the same time as Alexis' I would take it.

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  2. Oh my gosh.. I think that is WONDERFUL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    My husband and I used to go dancing ALL THE TIME before we were Christians!! When we got married and had our children, that wasn't so appealing anymore because we did get it out of our system when we were younger. Anyway, that doesn't mean we don't like dancing, we just will not ever go to a club again. There is nothing good there!! LOL. Anyway..long story short, we have really good friends at church, who, like us (back in the day) loved to go dancing too! We all laugh and crack up at the dances we did, etc. Well, all our kids love to dance too..it's in our blood! Well, when there is a b-day party at their house, we will all plan on "dancing the night away" at the end of the night. They have hard wood floors, so it's perfect! Couches are moved to the side, and EVERYONE dances! Granted, we do play secular music, but it's all 70's & 80's clean songs!! It's so fun to dance w/ our spouses, and kids!!!! It's such a great time for everyone!! You should see us all doing the electric slide!!!!!!!!! OH..and my friends husband and my sons have their bread dancing battles! LOL, my husband gets into it too! It's hilarous!!

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  3. OOps, I mean break dancing battles!!

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  4. Alicia ~ I wanna come to the dance party at your friends house!!! How fun!!! I would LOVE that, not so sure about hubby, he only gets crazy and dances for me all silly at home, and we find songs from the 70s and 80s to dance to as well - fun! :)

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  5. Hey Kathy-
    Thanks for stopping by my blog. I've seen pics of you on Kim's blog.. so I feel like I already know you .. a little. LOL.

    Beautiful blog you have here. And yes, I am a fellow Floridian too.. I'm in Volusia County.

    Thanks for the VERY VERY sweet comments on my blog about who was who in the picture of me and my girl.. I was the one with the hand on the book.. though from my point of view.. I'm the one with the wrinkles..LOL.

    Hope to be back by to visit again soon.

    Blessings to you this day!!

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  6. Kathy,

    I sooo love this post! and I am so happy that you have found your moves again....yes you are exactly right. The Lord looks at your heart and knows you and girl if you wanna dance.....then dance. He gave us the desires of our hearts and YOU know when you are not having godly desires or ways. I know some of our best friends joined the Y and they went to some classes together. sometimes they did the classical stuff sometimes hip hop and sometimes just get down and have some fun but you know what it brings intimacy between you and your honey or if you are dancing for the Lord then your heart will overflow for HIM....so get on your dancin shoes on have a great time.....love ya

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  7. I like to dance, I just have a problem with keeping up with the beat. Our oldest daughter wants to take ballet, and I'm all for it, we just have to work the payments into our budget.

    I do get a bit concerned when I am dancing that I may be drawing the wrong kind of attention to myself, (I'm not trying to draw attention to myself at all anyway, but ya know, people watch you regardless), my body just moves. I'm not trying to lure anyone with my movements or anything. I guess my point is that this too is a heart issue.

    Just think about why you are out there on the dance floor. For me, it's just because I like to move-n-groove!

    smooches,
    Larie

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  8. Ahhhh.

    I have to say, my daughter has been dancing before she knew what dancing was!
    She is a classical ballet dancer trained at Princeton Ballet. And let me tell you, it is so beautiful it is breath-taking. She never wanted to go to college, just be a wife and a mommy.

    I asked her what about if she never gets married? She responded with,," I will be a dance teacher for the rest of my life. I can be frugal, and I will love it."

    There you go.

    Dancing gets a bad rap. For a good reason. But it is also a lovely thing, a gift from GOD, that can be done to HIS glory.

    When I first saw the picture of you, I did think to myself, " She is a dancer, she has that look about her. " I was right!!!

    Oh! and ps, I can't even walk without tripping over my feet. lol. I envy you all, I will repent of it. lol.

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  9. I dance at home!

    So thankful you are jumping in. It's never too late to dance!

    I told Hannah, my 12 year old who dances, I should take a dance class.

    She laughed and said, "That would be funny, Mom."

    What does that mean?

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