In my late teens I took up ballroom dancing. There were some things I learned consciously – the steps, the moves, the rhythm; and some I learned instinctively – how to read my partner’s body so I could follow his lead. But when I began to dance I was not certain of what I had learned, and my movements were hesitant and awkward. I had to learn to trust my training and my partner and relax and let them take me round the floor.
For an exam or a competition you can learn a routine, but in a real dance, your partner needs what is called ‘floorcraft’ – the ability to read the situation and guide you into steps that will avoid a collision with other dancers. When you begin the dance you do not know what will happen or which way you will go.
I have been thinking recently that life with Jesus is like that. There are things I know in my head and things I know in my heart, but my steps are hesitant and awkward. I need to relax and give control to Jesus. He will guide my steps and take me through every situation, but I have to trust Him – and stop trying to lead!
I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go (Ps 32:8)
I know, O Lord, that a man's life is not his own; it is not for man to direct his steps. (Jeremiah's prayer, Jer.10:23)
In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps. (Pr.16:9)
Inventing the Individual: Book Review
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