Shut Up and Dance with Me


At any moment our family room is on the verge of being transformed into a rave. "Dance party! Dance party!" is all that's needed and the room will immediately cease to be a place of lounging, toy-playing, and movie watching and become a dance floor filled with moves you'd hope to never see a grown man do. 

Once my kids know the dance party is about to begin, they get to work prepping the room - the shades all get closed, every light in the house gets turned off, and the laser light machine gets pulled out of the closet. And then they deliberate (argue) over what song we should start with.

Once everything is set, I crank the music and the dancing begins. 

Now, it's important that you know something about our dance parties: I don't dance. I do for our kids' dance parties, but outside of our home - it's probably best if no one sees my moves. I have zero dancing ability - my hands and feet and body can't comprehend moving in connection to music. 

But here's the beauty of these dance parties: my kids don't care. 

They don't care how well I dance, how my moves compare to their friends' parents, or even whether or not I want to dance - they just to dance with their daddy. For my kids, dancing isn't about the performance, it's about the joy of the party. It isn't about being good enough to dance, it's just about the fun. It's not who is or isn't watching, it's just about dancing. 

When we think about Christian obedience, perhaps the best way to think about it is the same way my kids think about dance. It's not about how you perform, it's about the joy of the dance. It's not about how well you can dance, it's about the celebration.  

Think about dance - there are auditions and there are dance parties. In an audition, you dance to be judged. And once you hit a certain age, even if you're not auditioning, you feel like everyone is judging how you dance anyways. A dance party on the other hand is what you see as the expertise of a child - the pure joy of dancing.

@@Obedience is not an audition for the approval of God, it's a celebration.@@ Obedience is not a performance to be judged or an effort to generate applause, it's simple the joy of responding to the gift.  In a world that makes us feel like we're always auditioning for something, a life with Christ gives us the joy of dancing in the approval of our Father. 

Jared Wilson in the book Gospel Wakefullness describes this when he writes: 

"The gospel-astonished Christian dances because he’s moved by the music. He dances because he’s a dancer. There is no need to audition, to make the cut. He’s in. He’s at the ball. His doing is dependent on his being. What good news this is!"

@@The Father pronounces you as his child and it has nothing to do with whether you are a well-behaved child.@@  His approval is always, "Yes" in the work of the cross. This kind of gift makes a dance party inevitable.

And that kind of dance party looks a lot less like a holier-than-thou two step or begrudging-swing and more like the joy of a toddler's dance party.

So shut up and dance with me. 

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