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  • Writer's pictureTami Joy Flick's Musings

The Night I Danced with God

I remember that night. It was late, probably close to midnight. Everyone in the house was asleep, including our young kids. 



Our family had been living with some close friends during a  season of transition. In the 12 months or so before that evening, we had been released from staff positions at a church which we loved, and thus felt felt compelled to put our house on the market because our income had been drastically reduced. My husband’s job search had not gone as anticipated and so he funneled his time and energy into pursuing a business venture with his brother and another one with his friend. (If you know anything about starting a business, you know it takes a while to actually make enough to pay yourself). In a really unexpected  but welcome twist, the Lord had opened up a door for me as a Pentecostal worship leader to serve part-time in the worship and youth areas at a Presbyterian Church west of Kalamazoo in vineyard country.


We had also sold out home at the worst time, because the Michigan housing market had crashed and we ended up losing a significant amount of money (to us) on that sale.  We could have stayed with John’s parents at their farm, about 35 minutes further away into the countryside, but we felt led to stay closer to our kids’s wonderful Lutheran school. We thought if we would at least keep their education consistent (same comfortable building, same loving teachers, same little friends), we could provide a little stability for their young hearts during that very challenging season.


Our friends were kind and generous for allowing us to live with them during that season of pruning, rebirth, and growth as a family. (They even had a young woman already living with them and they still received our “refugee" family. Heroes!)  


During that season of seemingly perpetual, often painful transition, spending time with God was my lifeline. My emotions were raw, my heart was still healing, and  in communal living with young kids, it’s hard to find time and space to privately grieve and dream, process and hope.


Thankfully, our friends were early risers, which was helpful for this night owl in finding quiet, hidden spots in the evening for my times with the Lord.  Nighttime was my moment to sneak away to the still, cool waters of His Presence. I’d grab my Bible and journal and tip toe down two flights of stairs into the cozy, quiet basement with the shag rug and the comfortable seating. It’s where He and I would meet.


“Will you dance with Me?”


I had been sitting before the Lord with my arms outstretched in quiet adoration, as was my habit in that season.


His words unbidden, threaded into my spirit.


Startled, I opened my eyes.


What?


What did He say?


Again, “Will you dance with me?” 


I just sat there, thinking about the question.  I couldn’t shake the impression that He actually wanted me to dance with Him - right then, on the shag rug. There was no band playing Nat King Cole or Bryan Adams in the background. No twinkle lights elegantly draped over meticulously shaped trees. No evening breeze rustling through the leaves.  Those were the prerequisites for dancing in all my favorite Rom Coms. 


I was by myself, in a basement, on a rug, and the One who created the heavens and the earth was asking me for a dance.


It’s funny how even in a quiet time with the Lord, I could still feel slightly embarrassed.  Was this really God?  Or was it my imagination?


His question, like a pleasant aroma, lingered in my spirit.


I got up off the ground, raised my arms into the proper “dancing” position (a posture I head learned many years ago during my college Folk Dancing class) and closed my eyes.


In that moment, that suddenly very holy moment, I felt His presence increase all around me.  In fact, I felt a warm pressure on my palms, as if someone was actually standing in front of me putting their hands into mine. And like the dance novice I was, I just swayed back and forth, like an awkward preteen on a middle school dance floor.


Was it the Lord?  Or an angel? Or just my overactive imagination?


After (we) swayed back and forth for a few minutes, I stopped, still feeling a little weird about it all.


And then I heard Him whisper, “Thank you for dancing with me.”


The God of the universe was moved by my self-conscious, doubtful “yes.”  


I’ve learned over the years that we don’t have to feign boldness or courage when we choose to obey. Like when someone asks you for a Kleenex and you pull out an old, crumpled, fuzzy one from your pocket - the only helpful tissue you can offer to your friend at that moment.  Even that kind of tattered, mustard seed “yes” moves God’s heart.


We made it through that season. It was challenging and humbling, painful and yet strangely glorious. (And for the record, we experienced many moments of joy during that time as well, it’s just that internally, we were still processing so much.)  


When I reflect back, I realize that It was in that house where the Lord gave us strategy on how to gather churches together for a 12 hour (eventually growing into a 14 hour) “prayer push.” 


It was in that house where the Lord blessed me with a prophetic dream about birthing a house of prayer. 


It was in that house where I first heard the Lord call me “preacher.” 


And it was in that house where I danced with God.


"The Lord your God in your midst, The Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.” Zeph. 3;17






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