I’m a dancer. I danced and cheered most of my younger years and even taught some cheer and dance classes throughout college summers and after graduation. I just have always loved to dance. So naturally, that’s my inclination whenever I hear music. In fact, I’m sitting in Starbucks right now swaying to The Chainsmoker’s Closer in my earphones as I type this. (The corporate FedEx employee sitting next to me sipping his fancy latte is judging me like a champ. But whateves … 😉 )
Once I was old enough to frequent bars and clubs (Gasp! Yes, I did this often.), my main goal in going there wasn’t to drink, but to hang out with friends, listen to music and dance.
I remember one night a certain friend came with me, but refused to get on the dance floor. She was embarrassed because she didn’t consider herself to be a great dancer. So I shared with her my dance club wisdom, a golden nugget of information I learned almost immediately after reaching the appropriate age to frequent dance clubs.
Nobody is watching you.
They are too worried about themselves and their own moves to care about yours.
Now that I’m not visiting the club anymore, but instead am jumping around my living room to Mickey Mouse Clubhouse (if I happen to have enough energy), I realize this rule still applies to everyday life.
People are too wrapped up in their own next move to worry about what your’s looks like.
This goes for most situations and scenarios.
Think about it … and think about yourself too. How often are you thinking about what others are doing more than your own actions or how those other people’s situation affects you?
I venture to say, probably not too often.
Okay, okay … to say that all behavior is self-directed would be mis-leading, however, even charitable acts and thoughts tend to have a self-altruistic motive. Personally, I know I receive emotional rewards when I help other people. I love the look on someone’s face and the feeling I get when I have been a help to someone. Even though something was done for someone else, there is most often a self-motivated reason behind it.
For the record, I think this is okay … it’s not necessarily a bad thing. I believe Jesus rewards us with these emotions when we help others.
The only person who truly loved selflessly was Jesus. He is the only one who authentically cares about what you are doing.
So why is this important and why is it a good thing?
Because we can finally let loose. We have nothing to prove, my friend.
Things you hear from others and things they do are almost always self-motivated and should not be taken personally. Things you worry about doing but hold back because they might think you’re crazy should be something you go for.
We can get off the sidelines, get on the floor and dance. We can stop hiding behind our perfectly organized homes, our perfectly-shot Instagram photos and our perfectly obedient kids.
Walk up to that other mom in the park and strike up a conversation about why your kiddo decided to eat dirt at the playground again. Invite her over for coffee despite the fact you’ve run out of cream and sugar, then post a picture or video of your kids on social media playing around the mountains of laundry on the couch and on the peanut-butter smeared floors.
We have to risk exposure before we can feel free and enjoy the music of life.
People crave authenticity, so do that for them. And above all, do it for yourself. Because it’s in the messy, non-perfect moments that we get to experience the authentic relationships He has perfected for us.
You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; You have loosed my sackcloth and girded me with gladness, (Psalm 30:11)
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