Tuesday, January 7, 2014

God's Great Dance Floor?

If you have ever ridden in the car with me for very long, you'll pick up on a habit that my fiance JD loves to laugh about. Whenever a song comes on that I think is less than intelligent or that I'm sick of, I'll say, "NUH UH!" and turn the station. He's learned that when "I Can Only Imagine" comes on, he better go ahead and change it. There are quite a few other songs that I don't like or don't agree with that he knows I won't tolerate for very long.
A song came out about a year ago called "God's Great Dance Floor" by Chris Tomlin. I love Chris Tomlin and his music, but this song drove me NUTS! The song was awesome except for the title and the bridge. It's a pretty easy song. The chorus says,

You'll never stop loving us
No matter how far we run
You'll never give up on us
All of heaven shouts
Let the future begin

Cool enough, right?
Then the bridge.
I feel alive
I come alive
I am alive on God's great dance floor

I've gotta be honest. For months, I was furious that this was a title track and a single on radio. What in the world is "God's great dance floor"? Was he talking about the disco in Heaven, or some magical floor that Baptists aren't allowed on?  I was so frustrated about it because I love Chris Tomlin, but I thought this was the dumbest lyric on planet earth.

On New Year's Eve, I was getting ready in the morning and praying at the same time. I was praying that over 2014, I would follow Jesus more closely and be more in line with Him. As I was praying, I was reminded of Jesus saying, "I am the way, the truth and the life." (John 14:6) Usually, I keep going with that verse-- you know, "And no one comes to the Father but through me," but only the first half kept running through my head. I was thinking about the New Year and how Jesus is "the way" to a better year, "the truth" to how I am to live in order to have joy and peace and "the life". The Life stuck with me for a while. I started thinking on how we never are truly alive except with Jesus. We know that the consequences of sin is death, so our hearts and souls aren't really alive except when Jesus is in us.

I feel alive. I come alive. I am alive on God's great dance floor.

Understanding washed through me quickly when that song popped on right in the middle of this thought. Chris wasn't talking about something ridiculous. He was talking about John 14:6. We aren't really alive and moving until we're with God. We aren't alive unless we're abiding with Christ. I suppose that he could have said, "We're not alive unless we're in God's wrestling ring," but being alive and grooving on a dance floor is so much cooler. (Yes- I said grooving is cool. I am cool too.)

So I remembered and was encouraged by this song that with God, abiding in Him, we are alive and much more likely to dance and enjoy life. We find joy and peace and our groove with Him. 
Although it's still not my favorite song in the world, it helped me to determine my "resolutions". 
This year, I decided that it wasn't so much a year to make resolutions as it was a chance to start over again. As I sat watching Carson Daly on NBC as the big ball dropped in NYC, I realized for the first time that we treat the New Year as a time to start over- to wipe the slate clean and give it another go.

I must admit that I'm pretty partial to 2014. After all, it is the year that I'm getting married, which is pretty durn cool! But more than marriage, I have the chance to make this year different. In our new Follow series, we are talking about not trying harder to do what Jesus says, but learning to just follow Him. If I can learn how to follow Jesus effectively, this year will be different.

The more I follow Him, the more impact He has on my life.
The closer I follow Him and find my way through and with Him, the more alive I will be. 
The more alive I am, the more likely I am to dance.

On January 5, 2014, we began worship with the story from 2 Kings 6 and sang:
Whom Shall I Fear by Chris Tomlin
Here For You by Matt Redman
Turn Around by Matt Maher (his live album is awesome- especially for the gym!)
and Nothing is Holding Me Back by Bryan and Katie Torwalt

I'll take a quick moment and brag on my band members this week. Many of you may not have noticed, but Tom (the guy who led the last two songs) just jumped in at 9:15 and 10:40 to sing those songs! Adam, our bass player, was leading those songs and went through practice leading them. After practice on Sunday morning, he was on call for work and they had to call him in. While I was standing there trying to figure out what to do a few minutes before the first service, Tom volunteered and said he could do it. I was floored that he wanted to just jump in and sing songs that he hadn't practiced with- and he did AWESOME!
I'm blessed to work with some really, really great musicians who have incredible hearts. So thank you for practicing with us and being there for all of the leg work Adam and thank you to Tom for stepping up!

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