Friday, August 2, 2019

Dance

Do you know that Scripture speaks of dancing? David danced in front of the Lord, even with little clothing. He worshipped and praised as a life style while he danced. Now there were detractors, even his wife Michal. That will be the way, especially today for a Christian. “The joy of the Lord is our strength,” says Nehemiah 8:10. I find rejoicing in and praising the Lord a power producing and healing lifestyle. So it is no surprise that I find King David’s Psalm 30 one of great encouragement in trials.  I have written of God’s incredible healing in my life through His word in my book Great is God’s faithfulness.  Read and meditate on these words:
I will extol You, O Lord, for You have lifted me up,
And have not let my foes rejoice over me. 
O Lord my God, I cried out to You,
And You healed me. 
O Lord, You brought my soul up from the grave;
You have kept me alive, that I should not go down to the pit. 
Sing praise to the Lord, you saints of His,
And give thanks at the remembrance of His holy name. 
For His anger is but for a moment,
His favor is for life;
Weeping may endure for a night,
But joy comes in the morning. 
Now in my prosperity I said,
“I shall never be moved.” 
Lord, by Your favor You have made my mountain stand strong;
You hid Your face, and I was troubled.
I cried out to You, O Lord;
And to the Lord I made supplication: 
“What profit is there in my blood,
When I go down to the pit?
Will the dust praise You?
Will it declare Your truth? 
Hear, O Lord, and have mercy on me;
Lord, be my helper!” 
You have turned for me my mourning into dancing;
You have put off my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness, 
To the end that my glory may sing praise to You and not be silent.
O Lord my God, I will give thanks to You forever.

This psalm was written to be sung at the dedication of the temple. But God forbid David from building it as he had put his trust in large armies and not God. He was the only “man after God’s own heart,” but he also shed blood with the sword more than was pleasing to God. He and Israel had many enemies, so I probably would have done the same thing. But God must be headed, for as Isaiah 55:9 says, “My ways are higher than your ways, and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.”  We must seek Him and His word which will never return void or without accomplishing its purpose. I wrote of how God had healed me of my own sins as I was planning for a new hospital to be built after leading a financial and quality turnaround of the one that stood. But my own arrogance and fears of life had taken its toll. But God was faithful and brought me to my knees and into His grace and mercy just as King David. So David now rejoiced as God had lifted him from the pit or being killed. He praised God. “For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for life; weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning” (v.5). He regains his strength in his despair even making him stand strong like a mountain. He cries out to God that had been silent to David for a time, perhaps when he was acting on his own direction. Just as David, I cried out in the wilderness and God transformed me, making me new in Him. David prayed for mercy and help and God now responded. “You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; you have put off my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness, O Lord my God, I will give thanks to You forever” (vvs. 11-12).

God has brought him, as he had me, out of the valley of the shadow of death to use another one of David’s psalms of life in psalm 23. David like us went through trials, troubles, losses and gains, highs, lows and exaltation. Yet always he sought the Lord and His strength. Therefore the Lord lifted him up in due time.

Are you going through deep valleys of pain, loss, illness or trials?  I suspect if you are not, you have just come out from one or you will be going into one again. That is just life, it is not a dark view of it, it is how it works. If you are not, perhaps you should look inside and see if you have confessed your sins, repented and sought the mercy and healing of the Lord in your life.  If you have not, you are at risk to be on your own to deal with your valley. You need a “Guide” through the valley. If you receive His love and forgiveness as your Savior and Lord, He will do it. He will guide and turn your grief into joy and dancing.

In our lives we will have times of grieving. This is normal and it is a definite and difficult process of moving through the valley of the shadow of death. Meditate on this thought. God will cause you to “walk through” and the “shadows” will not hurt you. Do not fear it, but go into it. Release your fears into the Lord and let Him move you through to accomplish what He wants you to learn in this valley. I once led a grief support group called Griefshare.” Its byline was “Turning mourning into joy.”  Some people attending just walked or stormed out screaming that it is ridiculous and uncaring to even think joy in mourning. No, it is God’s plan to do it with you. Chose joy today and chose Jesus Christ, who suffered for you, to be your “Valley Guide.”

Before we end this devotional go to You Tube and listen to Lee Ann Womack as she sings, I Hope You Dance.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RV-Z1YwaOiw

Prayer: God of the universe, You are the Healer. You did not leave me to perish, but You were faithful. I praise You and thank You for all You have done and will continue to do in my life. Help me to be joyful and dance.  AMEN

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