Posted by: New in Every Way | January 9, 2013

In 2013 . . . I Hope You Dance!


DancingHow do like the sound of this:

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly” (Matthew 11:28-30 MSG).

When I was in junior high, I took two years of music theory in conjunction with piano lessons. Part of each theory lesson involved sight reading some music, giving the right duration to each note. When the score was a jumble of sixteenth, eighth, and quarter notes with syncopation thrown in, I scrambled to force all the notes into the beat.

Later on, as a teacher I had students who displayed their sense of rhythm with pencil-tapping on their desks.

As a music student, I was forcing notes into a rhythm. My pencil tappers . . . well, their rhythms were spontaneous and unforced. They came from the inside. They are an example of “unforced rhythm” and also of “grace.”

Here are some things “grace” means:

  • gift
  • benefit
  • favor
  • liberality

That’s why, if you’ve hung around Christian churches much, you’ve probably heard that “grace” means the unmerited favor of God. It’s not something we can earn; God just gives it out of the goodness of his heart.

But there’s something else “grace” means:

  • the divine influence on the heart*

Hmm . . . We could paraphrase Jesus’ statement at the top of the page as: “Walk with me and work with me–watch how I do it. Let me influence your heart. You will naturally begin living the way I do.”

In 2013, I hope you accomplish significant things God has set before you.

I hope you will welcome God’s grace to achieve them freely and lightly.

I hope you dance!

*I found these definitions of “grace” in Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible.

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