Dance Like No One Is Watching

This weekend I spent some time wildly dancing in front of and with my seven month old son and my wife. We had a great time. I was ridiculous, clearly off beat and I loved every moment of it. I loved it mainly because of my son’s reaction. He smiled and squealed as if I was the most amazing entertainment he had ever seen. His delight brought joy to my heart and I was far from caring how cool I looked.

It’s a wonderful experience to be free, to be childish and silly without worrying about one’s image. As I reflect upon this I am reminded of Morrie Schwartz, featured in the book Tuesday’s with Morrie, who states that we should “Dance like no one is watching.” It reminds me of the story of David when he brought back the ark of the covenant and danced in the streets, to the point where his wife mocks and scolds him for it and his response is “It was before the Lord…I will become even more undignified than this…”( 2 Samuel 6:20-22).

I think about child-like faith and all that is lost when we try and put on a good show. Missy Higgins’ lyrics from Going North then come to mind:

And I wanna know where children would go
If they never learned to be cool
‘Cause nothing’s achieved when pushed up a sleeve
So nobody thinks you’re a fool


I picture how Max lit up and it brings a smile to my face. I think about how his joy energized me and I start to think about God’s delight. When we think about David we often make it about worship and glorifying God in some strict fashion. When we think of David dancing before the Lord sometimes we tend to make it about church worship, traditional devotion, strict ideas of glorifying God but let’s not lose sight of the fact that joy caused David to enjoy the moment without caring what people thought. So much is missed when we try and be cool.

Suppose God has delight, just like my son, every time we allow ourselves the freedom to be child-like fools. When we let go of seriousness and image-monitoring to experience joy, I imagine God squealing in delight. He’s on your side and it was for freedom that He set us free!


I would encourage you to do two things this week:

  1. Imagine God squealing in delight over you the way a small child would. Hold that feeling and let yourself soak in it.
  2. Be silly- it may just be a spiritual discipline

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