By Susan K. Smith,
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me…
We all know the words, but it may be that very few of us understand, embrace and walk in the truth of those words.
Recently, I watched a video of a young man and woman doing an amazing and beautiful pas de deux. It was breathtaking. The movements, the flow, the grace, the power and energy and the emotion shown through the movements…were breathtaking.
It would all have been breathtaking had everything been “normal,” but everything was not normal. The male dancer had only one leg.
How do you dance with one leg?
There are those of us who look at what we lack and let it define and limit us. We forget that God is a God of sufficiency, that God made us in such a perfect way that we, even now, do not understand the brilliance of ourselves, based on how we were created. We too often say, “I cannot,” but God created us to know, “I can.” We look at our flaws and shortcomings and let them hold us back, but God has created us in such a way that our flaws can and often do become our strength.
There is no lack that we have that is greater than the God who created us, the God of sufficiency.
This man with one leg did pirouettes. He leapt. He did falls and turns. He did brake dance moves. He used his one leg to support a fairly risqué move done by his female partner. When he stood up, he did not stumble, and when he did jazz falls, he was in control. The only way we knew he had only one leg was because he was dancing in front of us.
He didn’t hid his lack, either. We did not have to guess that he had one leg. He showed his lack boldly. And yet, he danced.
God wants us all to dance, to move, to live, to create…using our lack, not hiding it. In the space of lack, God steps in, the God who is a God of sufficiency, the God who made us to be able to do all things. We can survive in spite of what we do not have …because we have God.
God put a spirit of divine defiance in each and every one of us, and God put it there because God wants us to look at our lack and laugh at it! God wants us to look our lack in its face and say, “you are not the boss of me!” Instead of massaging our weaknesses, God wants us to develop our strengths! God wants us to say to whatever is trying to hold us down, “I will rise!”
We were made to resurrect. We were made to get up and move on, no matter what. We were made to defy the forces of evil which make us expect failure and honor our failures by giving them too much power. We were made to stand when the world says we cannot, to sing when the world says we should not, to fly when the world says we’d better not. We are “fearfully and wonderfully made.”
We were made to dance…with one leg.
Amen and amen.
Rev. Dr. Susan K. Smith –Writer, author, musician, pastor, preacher and social justice advocate. She is a graduate of Yale Divinity School and author of “Crazy Faith: Ordinary People; Extraordinary Lives,” which won the 2009 National Best Books Award. Follow Rev. Dr. Susan K. Smith on Twitter:www.twitter.com/cassad