In many ways it made perfect sense, the way her life had played out. The old woman glanced up from the tattered old Bible in her lap and she skimmed the pictures on the wall, each representing a different season of her life that God had brought her through. Lost in reflection, she thought about this dance that she and Jesus had been dancing over the last 80 years.
It was a beautiful dance, with a master choreographer. There was no doubt that it had its choppy parts, but looking back at how it all fell together, she saw it as a beautiful piece. She first accepted Jesus’ invitation to dance as a young, awkward seventh grader. The sound of His voice echoed through her soul as He called out to her. It was an invitation she just couldn’t resist. As he taught her the steps, her moves were flimsy and uncertain. As she transitioned into a teenager, the music became louder and the crowd surrounding them more obvious. The noise and distractions of the teenage world pulled her in many directions as others tried to cut in. She struggled to keep her eyes on her partner and struggled to hear His voice above it all.
Just as she was tempted to leave the dance floor, the music faded into a soft, melodious love song. She then found herself in the loving embrace of her True Love, her Savior. As they swayed softly back and forth, He whispered to her that He was all she would ever need. She shared her dreams and plans with Him, and He continued to sing His love over her, assuring her that this dance would all be worth it in the end. It was here that she learned to follow His lead.
Lost in the wonder of this dance she called life, a certain season caught her attention. There was a time in which their dance changed tempo frequently. It was harder to perform than any other, yet they had never been so in sync as in this season. The season was motherhood. Oftentimes she found herself dancing in the embrace of Jesus to her favorite lullabies. In quietness and trust she closed her eyes with her head against His chest, and He would sing lullabies from His Word into her heart. Many times as they rocked side to side to the melodious truths, she would dance with her daughters on her toes, teaching them what it looked like to dance a dance with Jesus.
She recalled how reluctant she was to dance this dance at first. She thought it would be easy and natural, but the steps proved to be more complicated than she ever could have imagined. When she and her husband decided to start a family, they thought it would be unproblematic, and she assumed she would be dancing her way into her happily-ever-after fairy tale. Learning of health issues that would complicate the matter, she struggled to keep up with the dance that Jesus was leading her through. It was through this time that Jesus taught her to lean her head upon His chest, close her eyes, and trust Him as He led her.
She finally got pregnant against all odds, but three months into her pregnancy she lost her first little miracle. She thought she would never dance again. This, she thought, was the type of injury that would keep a dancer out for life. But for Jesus, that was not an option. He swooped down and lifted her into the cradle position, and danced with her in His arms until her heart was mended enough for her to stand again. As she was held in His arms, His heart beat against her and He revealed Himself to her in astonishing ways. It was here that He opened her eyes to hope and gave her glimpses of the dance they were about to dance.
Once she was ready to dance on her own two feet again, he set her down but held her up. A new little miracle began to grow within her womb. As she battled fears, doubts and pregnancy complications, Jesus held her close. She found refuge within His close embrace. As she learned again to close her eyes and trust Him, He taught her the lullabies that she would soon need to know to dance with her tiny babes.
At last she welcomed her first child. The tiny baby grew into a bright, energetic toddler, and as the tempo quickened life resembled a tap dance: fun and upbeat yet rhythmic and synchronized with the steps of Jesus.
The cadence of the music would again wind down as Jesus pulled her close and prepared her for their next steps. He used scares and trials, picking her up in lifts and maneuvers, to increase her faith and her capacity to trust Him. Somehow she became comfortable with those lifts as Jesus would elevate her high into the air, higher than she ever fathomed her faith could take her. She knew that Jesus would never let her fall. Her second daughter was born without a heartbeat, and no oxygen filled those tiny lungs. All those watching gasped in fear, yet Jesus brought victory and the baby was healed. In fact, after seeing the seamlessness of how Jesus moved through this miracle, some decided that they too would like to dance with Jesus.
After almost losing this child again to an illness that threatened to take her life, Jesus stunned His audience with another amazing move. After the child was saved, the woman and her family broke out into a celebratory victory dance, with Jesus in the middle as they praised Him for all He had done for them.
Replaying this dance in her mind filled her with great joy. The dance was hard, and it seemed choppy. But now looking back at how it all flowed together, it was beautiful. In many ways it made perfect sense.