Saturday, May 24, 2014

A Time to Dance

In the beginning they danced for the wonder and the joy of it all. The morning stars sang together, and the greater light and the lesser light danced in their orbits of wonder. Creation was wonderfully fair, and the love of the Creator shone out through every grass blade and blossoming twig. The waters danced in the streams and the rivers, and the great waters moved in harmony. The mighty beasts and the tiny ones woke into gladness. And it was very, very good.

But sorrow came with sin, and there was grief and pain and horror, and Death, who immobilises all dancing, made his terrible presence felt. Ruin and decay appeared, step by grief-filled step, and all things under the sun fell away from glory. And the deepest ruin was in the heart of man, where Death had set up his throne, and ruled all things towards a grim and bitter misery. And dancing was rare, except for the frantic gyrations with which the flesh would try to forget, for a few moments, its grinding mortality. But here and there, where the hints of a better Springtime broke through, where the smile of the Father, who had not forgotten his world, was still reflected in the sunshine and the blessed rain, and the soft light of the stars in the evening, hearts would lift in praise, and, for a faltering footstep or two, they would stumble in and out of the everlasting dance.

And the ages passed, and the hearts of men grew weary, and death had dominion. But in the darkest shadows a promise danced, and the time came for the promise to be fulfilled. And so he came down from heaven, God himself, and his love danced through every word and action, power and redemption and mercy dancing out a story so glorious that those who had eyes to see were overcome with wonder. And he danced, with feet weighed down with every dreadful burden of our mortality, into confrontation with Death. And Death, who not abide the dance or the promise, pinned him down with dreadful nails, to finish the dance and silence the music of heaven once and for all.

But it could not be. For Life broke Death, sin was accounted for, and, on that glorious Resurrection morning, he danced out of the tomb, bringing glory and fulfilment with him, and invited all of humanity to join in the new dance with him. And they danced their way through hardship and persecution, through discouragement and loss, and the world was not worthy of them. And still they dance to the music of heaven, the love-song of the Father, though they stumble and falter in their human clumsiness, for they have seen the beauty of their Christ, and they would seek to dance his steps all the days of their lives.

And they dance in hope, for they know that one day all things will be restored, and there will be a new heaven and a new earth fresh from the hand of the Creator. And the morning stars will sing again, and there will be no need of sun and moon, for God himself will be their light, and by that light, enthralled by the revelation of his beauty, they shall dance out his praise for all eternity.

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