Saturday, May 21, 2016

Shaking Off the Dust

“Shake off your dust; rise up, sit enthroned, Jerusalem. Free yourself from the chains on your neck.  Daughter Zion, now a captive.” Isaiah 52:2

How much does dust weight? I ask because I have done a clean-up this morning and pulled out things from walls and moved boxes.  After an hour and a half of dusting the long undisturbed corners of my house I am sweating. I am not glowing.  I know glowing and I know sweating – come to think of it, I almost always sweat. I swear I have more than my share of sweat glands.  I don’t know how to look cool.

How big the dust particles are and where they came from makes a difference. Particles of dust from a stone weigh heavier than particles of dust from old clothes.

How much might the dust of forgotten dreams weigh? Or disappointed hopes? Or the dust of last year’s successes? The dust from neglected friendships?

Wednesday it was when God drew attention to my dust.

He told me that I was carrying excess dust. My life had fallen into a pattern. Just as in a dusty house you might be able to trace the route someone took through the room by looking at the footsteps in the dust, God said he could see my comings and goings clearly.  There were just places that I had stopped going and the dust in those places had settled – places in worship, dancing places, singing in the spirit places, kneeling on the floor places.  The kneeling on the floor that I no longer do is down to a dodgy knee. Getting up afterwards is an issue. But, you get the picture. I have surrendered a lot of the things I used to do. I am comfortable.

Wednesday it was when Broken Walls came to town. I had every intention of going.  There are things where my heart really isn’t in it and I allow myself to talk myself out of going. This was not one of those events.

“But are you going to spectate, or to participate?” said God.

I didn’t know whether I was allowed to participate. Was it a concert? Broken Walls is a band made up of native North America Indians.  Some of them have Scottish connections. They communicate a message of freedom and respect told through music, songs, dance and storytelling.

They have a Mohawk water drum! They invited my friend, George, to take his seat round the drum and join in. I have seen my share of westerns and know about Indian drums and war dances. On Wednesday I was introduced to Healing dances, singing and dancing over a patch of ground before building a tepee and a Good Dance song that celebrates unity and friendship. Just for a while I was an eagle. Every step matters. I am sure that there are right steps and wrong steps as in any professional dance but what caught my heart on Wednesday was just dancing. It was a joy to fling arms and stamp feet and know that with each step I was making a stand against the enemy.  In the Healing Dance I knew that I was claiming healing – that dust that had been weighing me down was being shaken off.  The inner Mel that had slowly been pushed down by tiresome circumstances began to stand tall. The music offered me freedom and I took it. 

The band abandoned the big drum and picked up guitars. The volume was loud. The floor shook. I decided that I could do without my hearing aids. The ponytail of one of the Indians was shaken loose as he sat inside a normal drum set hammering away.  He did a drum solo. I wished I was fluent in drum-speak – the drums whispered to one another, they spoke, they listened and they responded.  There was a conversation happening and I wanted to tap into it. It was awesome.  Some people would have called it prophetic.

We were reminded that we were all created to be different, to be unique. We are created - I am created to do something that only I can do. I can never be satisfied when I am not doing what I was created to do. When I know my place in God’s Kingdom, and step into the role God has planned for me there is so much joy to be had.

Wednesday was followed by Thursday, Friday and the weekend. I might not be dancing on the outside, but on the inside?

Since then I’ve not stopped dancing
I’m not keen on sitting down
I love to feel beneath my feet
The firmness of the ground.

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