Sunday, July 5, 2015

2 Samuel 6.1-19: Except Everyone is Watching

David sounds graceful in the lectionary reading for Proper 10B/Ordinary 15B/Pentecost 7 (2 Samuel 6:1-19). He dances before the Lord with all his might. But a quick image search of "David dance ark" reveals that there might have been a whole lotta awkward going on.
 These Davids are no Misty Copeland.
But I suspect that both David and Misty Copeland understand what dance legend Martha Graham is credited with saying, "Great dancers aren't great because of their technique. They are great because of their passion." That certainly does not downplay the tremendous dedication to study and technique required of Copeland and all professional dancers. Instead it understands that technique is not enough. There must be passion, determination, drive, desire. It is in the additional ingredients that lies the difference between stellar technique and the ability to soar.

Motivational posters tell us to "Dance like no one is watching". But everyone was watching David, and someone is watching us. That someone is God. Who understands that Misty Copeland helps us experience things that we cannot do for ourselves. God does not expect each of us to dance like Misty Copeland (thank goodness!), but God does want us to dance in whatever awkward way we might dance. We might be better helped this week by abstract images and images implying movement that might cover up those awkward stop-action moments for many of us.

Photographer Shinichi Maruyama created time-lapse photographs of dancers that captures the movement, and perhaps a bit of how it feels to dance, remembering that it only matters that God is watching. So dance with all your might before the Lord.
For additional images in this series, see:

A thought-provoking change of setting for the story of David's dance. Click on the Art&Faith Matters Facebook link here to see what this is. 

For thoughts on Mark 6:14-29, click here.

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