Guest Author - Dountonia S. Slack
Dancing for the Lord is not simply a matter of choreographing steps to go along with inspired music. Rather, the choreography should be birthed from time spent in the Word, prayer, and meditation. A praise dancer ministers the Word of God in a creative, intellectual, and emotional way that draws people closer to God in reverence and sincerity to Him. Although technique and dance experience are important, they are not necessary prerequisites for ministering in dance. The only requirement for dancing for Him is that the Spirit of God must indwell the instrument of the dancer. As a result, one must prepare to worship not prepare to perform.
Every aspect of the dancer’s body should be consecrated daily – he or she should hunger and thirst for righteousness, seek the Will of God, and die to self daily. The attitude of the dancer is that of a humble servant that defers all attention and accolades to the Master. When a praise dancer prepares for a worship experience before others, he or she does so by the power of the Holy Spirit working in his or her life and through obedience and submission to the ways of God. Therefore, I have listed some devotional Scriptures from the NASB for meditation and study for those who have been called to dance for the Lord in order for our ministry to minister His message to all.
The head of a praise dancer should contain thoughts focused on God. His or her countenance should radiate joy, praise, and reverence no matter what he or she is going through. “Then he poured some of the anointing oil on Aaron’s head, anointing him and making him holy for his work” Leviticus 8:12.
The shoulders of a praise dancer carry the Message of the Good News. We prayerfully seek to draw the lost and other Believers into the worship experience. “And when he has found it, he will joyfully carry it home on his shoulders” Luke 15:5.
The arms of a praise dancer reflect the beauty, comfort, and safety of God’s arms. As his or her arms flow through space, he or she ushers you closer into His arms, closer to His heart. “I was thrust into your arms at my birth. You have been my God from the moment I was born” Psalm 22:10.
The hands of a praise dancer build others up in encouragement by the gentleness of a touch or the firmness of correction in love. “I will praise you as long as I live, lifting up my hands to you in prayer” Psalm 63:4.
The heart of a praise dancer is being transformed by the Spirit of God through the Word of God. His or her motive for dance is the motive of God – to point others towards Christ. “Examine me, O LORD, and try me; Test my mind and my heart” Psalm 26:2.
The body of a praise dancer is set aside and used for God’s glory. “Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts, and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God” Romans 6:12-13.
The knees of a praise dancer are familiar with the posture of prayer in times of joy, sorrow, persecution, distress, or disappointment. “For this reason I bow my knees before the Father” Ephesians 3:14.
The feet of a praise dancer take steps and walk paths that are ordered by God. His or her feet are led by the power of the Holy Spirit eager to fulfill the Great Commission and to give Him all glory, honor, and praise. “And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, “How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!” Romans 10:15
For me, I am most free to worship when I dance. For others, it may be silence, song, music, writing, or maybe something else is your God-given method of expressing love and devotion to God in worship. Whatever that way may be, worship Him in spirit and in truth and with a loving heart’s attitude that points others to Him. For more information on dance ministry consulting, choreography, praise dance aerobics, or how to use praise dance as an outreach tool, call Dance by Dountonia toll free at 1-877-591-1104. May God continue to bless you as you “present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship” (Romans 12:1).