Tuesday, March 1, 2016

A Time to Mourn, A Time to Dance

I quickly created the schedule to accommodate our busy life.

I didn’t even realize that I set father/daughter class on the anniversary of my own dad’s death.

I told myself I was going to be fine. And, to be honest, I usually am okay on that calendar date. Yes, my mind temporarily transports back to the ICU room where I held his hand, told him all that I loved about him, that I would live for Jesus, and how I would make my life count. But, it stops there with a smile of thanks for a man I was lucky enough to call dad.

Then the signups began. Middle school girls dreaming of this living moment with their fathers. There would be sparkly dresses and beautifully done hair and their own reasons for why this occasion held significance. I knew that it would be I who felt most blessed to be a part of this moment – I always do – but, on this day, more so.

Unexpected tears blurried my eyes and I began to wonder if God trusted me a little bit more than perhaps He should.

Memories were jarred. The dust shook off still frame images of moments with my father and I could see so clearly again. His hands wrapping curlers in my hair for church when my mom was at work. The super soaker fight we had in the house (sorry, mom). Him putting a puzzle together.


I didn’t want to lose my dad. Hardship was nowhere on the calendar I’d created for my life.

It never is for us, is it?

And, I realized that in the brush of my life I cried out to Jesus with an honest heart but I subconsciously held some of my heartache against God. I pinned blame and effectively erected a dam from the Lord’s free flowing mercy.

God wasn’t ruining my life. He was collecting my tears (Psalm 56:8).
God wasn’t abandoning me. He was covering me with His feathers so that I might have refuge (Psalm 91:4).
God didn’t expect me to find way on my own. He gifted me opportunity to simply be and do all the fighting for me (Exodus 14:14).

Ultimately we all choose to be at war with our story or accept it into our DNA and have it make a difference.

I pick up every piece. I love you, my child.

Heart work freed me. Chains I didn’t even realize held me in bondage were broken. I newly tasted the sweetness of God's character and pinpointed His faithfulness.

Sweet joy!

I drove to the dance studio excited and overwhelmed at the privilege of being chosen to orchestrate this evening even though I was so underserving. New snapshots to be taken in the mind’s eye for these father-daughter pairs would stand the test of time, bringing smiles to their faces long after the night was done.

And when the class was over, I opened a king sized rolos (candy my dad always hid from me because he loved them so much) and a Diet Coke before God said, “Come dance with me.”

I turned the music on

And twirled with arms raised high under the glow of the mirror ball lights, my shirt collecting countless tears in movement that was prayer of gratitude more heartfelt any words I’ve ever spoken.

This timing of this class had bigger purpose. It was for those enrolled. It was for me.

The pieces have been put together and THIS is something beautiful.

Our experiences are held in His hands, friends. And He uses even the most unworthy of us to help create an eternal masterpiece.

It was a time to dance in every way.

PS- If you skipped over the song video, make sure you listen to it now. Your day will be better for it :)


  1. Reading your post brought tears to my eyes. I too terribly MISS my dad. It will be two years on 4th March and I still think of him most of the time..he was my best friend!!Sending a hug your way!I loved your caption and may good luck follow you wherever you go.

    1. God's peace to you in this upcoming anniversary

  2. What a beautiful testimony to your earthly father's investment and love of his sweet girl and the way the Heavenly Father meets our needs in all of His Sovereign grace.
    Bless you !


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