I remember my first slow dance with an adorable guy holding me. It was the moment I’d dreamed of, when the whole world fades away…and I spent the whole dance staring at my feet. I was so nervous about stepping on his toes, that I never looked up once, as I danced with him at arms’ length. (Literally, a full arm’s length.)
I’m not sure if you understand the gravity of this situation:
I can’t dance.
Not I *don’t* dance, because that implies a choice in the matter. Rather, I *can’t* dance.
A couple weeks ago my boyfriend took me to an evening of swing dance. I was excited to get dressed up (as usual), but didn’t exactly have high hopes for the evening. So you can imagine my surprise when he began leading me around the dance floor and…I was actually dancing!!
I couldn’t stop thinking about it. For once in my life, I could dance, simply because I responded. And then the thought came…
Our whole walk with God is a heavenly response.
In swing dancing, I never had to figure out the next move, I just responded to my partner’s lead. In the same way, we don’t have to figure out how to fix ourselves; we simply respond to the Holy Spirit’s work in our hearts.
First, we need to remember that it’s God who began a relationship with us in the first place, not the other way around. It was His desire to know us—and the Holy Spirit’s actions toward that end—that began our relationship with Him, and we can “[be] confident that He who has begun a good work in [us] will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:6)… Remember, it wasn’t up to you to do anything more than accept His salvation when He offered it to you; that’s all He asked of you then. In the same way as He knew how to draw you to Himself in the first place, He knows how to draw you closer to Him now. It’s simply up to you to respond to His leading, just as you did at the time of your salvation…
I read that, and all I could think about was swing dancing.
My mentor went on to talk about how we can position our hearts to respond. In swing dancing we had to keep tension in our arms, so that I could sense my boyfriend’s lead. I’m a horrible follower, but he was a strong leader, so it felt natural and smooth. If I started going off doing my own thing, he’d stop with a cool freeze pose, and we’d start again, resynchronizing our rhythm. In the same way, there are ways we can position our hearts to respond to the Lord as He leads us (even when you’re a horrible follower like me).
But that’s what it is:
It’s all a response.
How beautiful to take the pressure off our own efforts, and simply follow our heavenly Father as He says,
“May I have this dance?”