Yesterday afternoon I took a walk with my mom from her apartment through the skyways to Woodbury’s YMCA. We stopped for a few moments to watch an aerobic’s class in session. After a couple of minutes I discovered that it was a Zumba fitness class that utilizes Latin dance steps and movements for fitness. The Zumba fitness motto is, “Ditch the work out, join the party!” I quickly noted that there were no males participating and that I would have trouble doing even the simple moves. Still I am intrigued.
One reason for my interest is that I have often used the image of dance to express how our life with Jesus flows. Dance is more complicated, more nuanced, than simply walking or running. It has rhythm and expression that expresses a wide range of emotions and ideas. I believe our life with Jesus is more often a joyous dance with others moving in and out of the circle, than a somber march of following certain rules and regulations. Like dance, life in Jesus involves practice and spontaneity, community and solitude.
I doubt that I will be joining a Zumba class soon; I continue to have trouble discerning my left foot from my right. Recently at my mother’s apartment they had a dance and after some hesitation, I escorted my mom on to the dance floor. As we “danced” she said to me, “we’re not really dancing, we’re just moving our feet.” I laughed.
As we live with Jesus, sometimes we dance, sometimes we simple move our feet. But it is all graceful with his presence.
Jeremiah 31:13 Then shall the young women rejoice in the dance, and the young men and the old shall be merry. I will turn their mourning into joy, I will comfort them, and give them gladness for sorrow.