Ray Dadswell Pause for Thought: Shall we dance?

THE music was intense, to say the least.

Some 32,000 people, scattered around the stands of Wembley Stadium, were enjoying the recent National Day of Prayer and Worship. Pray we did, sing we did, with great enthusiasm.

Towards the end of the four-hour programme, Christian song-writer Godfrey Birtill took the stage to belt forth his own composition ‘Just one touch from the King’.

The volume increased with each verse, the whole place shook.

My son, back in Eastbourne, had encountered this man on several occasions previously, so I decided he could also participate in the current rendering.

Modern technology enabled me to send him a snatch of sound, the intention being to stir him up a bit on an otherwise dull day.

In due course, back came a text, telling me to ‘stop playing around with the mobile phone; start jumping up and down’. I knew exactly what he was getting at, but really I only sway a little when I join in praise and worship these days. Oh yes, I clap hands now and again, too.

Our friend the Preacher, in Ecclesiastes 3, 4, reminds us that ‘there is a time to dance’. This activity can be sensual as well as spiritual, I suppose; King Solomon may have had both in mind.

When I see Christians dancing in church, I would like to think that it is always an expression of their love and devotion to the Lord and a desire to demonstrate ‘the joy of their salvation’ (Psalm 51, 12).

How many of our local congregations allow dancing in their services, I wonder. Or is it regarded as too ‘worldly’? To the psalms again: ‘Let the people be glad in their King. Let them praise his name with dancing and make music ...’ (149, 2-3).

P.S. Here is an opportunity to meet the founder and editor of Christian paper ‘Heart of Sussex’, Melanie Symonds, who will give her testimony and a short talk on ‘Following a vision’.

Saturday 20th October, Eastbourne Christian Prayer Centre, Lismore Road, 10.30 am for coffee and doughnuts, 11.15 for talk and questions.