I have always wanted to be a good dancer. For my entire life I have FELT music. Rhythm reaches deep into my being. Watching others dance enthralls me. Shortly after my arrival to Haiti a local guy started a group in dance lessons. I eagerly joined in. Being 30 years senior to all students (and the instructor!) and the only white person with no rhythm was not going to stop me.
We had learned two Latin dances – the Bachata and the Cha Cha Cha. Things seemed to be feeling pretty good, I had loosened up enough to get a little rhythm in these ole hips of mine.
Our instructor seemed impressed that this old white lady could learn new moves and he invited me to dance a little more advanced with him. It was so fun, and just feeling comfortable when he stopped, looked me in the eye and pierced my soul with these words, “You can’t follow”…..
I was astounded, wounded. Initially defending that possibility I reminded him that I have a full mind today. We are anticipating the arrival of our shipped van at any moment, I am keeping one ear on the music and one ear on the street to greet them when they arrive. Surely that must be it, right?
Doing my best to take the criticism well and not show my emotions, I dance on with the group. Over and over his words replayed in my mind, “You can’t follow”.
Specifically during a time of huge transition into full time life in Haiti, these words were like salt on a wound. They stung. As I walked home from dance lessons my thoughts to myself were of thanks to my instructor. I was given pause to reflect on my ability to follow. The stinging words moved me to examine the rhythm in other areas of life.
Each time I have been given an opportunity to dance again I have pushed through the intimidation, embracing the stinging words. I will choose to follow. I will practice until I CAN follow well. I will not allow the wound to fester, but choose to allow the salt to modify me.
While dancing a lady needs a good leader if she is to be a good dancer. You could say, Tricia, maybe you didn’t have a good leader. That is not the case. Those words were mine to receive.
As I process through following well in other areas of life I am reminded of the movie “August Rush”. Life is full of music, a compilation of all the sounds around us. I serve a King that asks me to follow him, a husband who needs me to follow him, organizational directors who lead me well. I push forward with intent, the intent to learn to follow well.
This lesson stung a little. That burning flesh is a good thing. It makes me stronger. It pushes me forward. And about you? How is God speaking into your life? How would He like to mold you into just a slightly different shape than is comfortable for you? Do not fear the change – embrace it!
Isaiah 64:8 :
“Yet you, Lord, are our Father.
We are the clay, you are the potter;
we are all the work of your hand.”
Go. Be moldable today, and then I want to hear from you. How did that feel? What difference did it make in your day? How did God use you / speak to you? Oh, I want to hear about it!!!