A common thought of corporate worship is to focus on Jesus, close our eyes, raise our hands and sing to the Lord, pray to the Lord, find that secret place to meet with God. I have often found this as a little silly. We are together, we have come together to meet and be with each other. To see each other worship and be encouraged. I say OPEN YOUR EYES see what the painter is doing it just might show you a side of God you have never seen. What is the dancer doing? Don’t be afraid to watch it may speak something to your soul. Lock eyes with the drummer you might catch a feel of what he is feeling and be blessed. Don’t be afraid to open your eyes. See God’s colour, movement, and passion around you. We have come together so enjoy each other in a healthy raw way.
Does this mean we shouldn’t close our eyes or raise our hands and focus on the Lord? Of course not. We should if that’s what we would like to do. But let’s not get caught in believing that that is the only way or best way to give and receive from God in worship.
Part of this I know comes from my past experiences hearing many people have problems with dancers on the stage during a worship service. How many times I have I heard. You are a distraction, you should dance this way but not that way, choreographed vs not choreographed. Trust me it’s pretty hard to not get discouraged and want to just stop doing the very things that help you feel and know God the most. The things where you feel so YOU and just can’t not do. If as a dancer I feel that I should dance at the front of the church in front of the people (notice I didn’t say I WANT to), the same way a preacher, or prophet would take the mic and speak into it so that everyone could hear. I will dance at the front so everyone can see what the Lord is doing in and through me. Why hide at the back? For me it’s like putting a mussel on the preacher.
Do I use wisdom when choosing when to dance and how to dance? Of course. After over 12 years of dance I have actually learned a thing or two (more to learn of course). I’m not just some girl who wants attention or gets her thrills from others watching me express my very soul. I do it because I must, because it’s in me. If I am in a place where I have the freedom to use my gift I will use it with wisdom and knowledge. My dance is my instrument. Do we ask the guitarist or even question when he joins the band ON STAGE and plays? Do we question his heart just because he is worshiping in front of everyone? Probably not.
Can you tell I’m just a little raw in this area? I have put dance and other forms of creative worship that I have moved in on the shelf the past year or so. Very rarely using these things to worship with others. In a way I have retreated to my secret place. I have run away feeling so tired and alone. So because of that I guess I just made myself actually be alone. There have been times here and there over the past year or so that I have touched these things in the corporate circle. But I only ever gave little, just enough of my self to get through. This was actually more difficult then shelving it all together.