Dancing with the Spirit
Kass Unger of Parramatta, New South Wales, Australia
You hold precious lives in your hands. Be gentle and gracious with one another. A community is no stronger than the weakest within it. Even as the One you follow reached out to those who were rejected and marginalized, so must the community that bears his name. -Doctrine and Covenants 162:6c
“You’re a good follower.” It’s something that I hear quite often. “That was a great dance. You’re a good follower.” When it comes to successful partner dancing, there is a leader and a follower. The leader proposes the steps; the follower chooses to follow or not. It requires both working together.
Let’s be clear, I am not a good follower. I am a bit of a control freak and part of the reason I took up the salsa style of dance was to learn to give up a little of that control. It was unbelievably difficult for me.
After I understood the basic steps, and the panic in my stomach started to dissipate; I was ready to try my feet on the social dance scene. This did not go well. People didn’t lead how I expected. They didn’t combine the steps in the same order I had learned. They threw steps at me that I hadn’t learned at all, or even worse-they were not in time with the music! Instead of beautiful twirling and swirling and happy dancing, there were panic, dislocated shoulders, and arguments about the timing of the music.
One day something clicked. In order to dance together we needed to work together. I needed to take what the other person was offering, regardless of what I thought, and make it work. Sometimes I needed to transform it a little to fit me better. Other times I had to completely surrender and trust my partner entirely, because I couldn’t figure out what was coming next. Those times were often when I would stare back open mouthed and amazed at what they had just managed to make my body do. Other times I even danced out of time with the music, but in time with my partner. It kills me inside, but I do it anyway.
Letting go and accepting whatever others offer doesn’t apply only on the dance floor. Working together has allowed for some truly beautiful and creative expressions in my life and in my ministry.
“Be vulnerable to divine grace” (Doctrine and Covenants Section 163:10b).
This month, spend time each day noticing where divine grace is already pouring forth. Perhaps it is a simple awareness of creation’s systems and cycles that support our daily existence. The sun rises each day without being asked. There are underlying rhythms and relationships that hold the fabric of our lives together. Sometimes they fall into the background of our lives. We forget to see the natural generosity that spills over throughout our days-of the planet, the people we love, the Sacred Presence in all moments, the kindness of strangers we encounter, and the gifts we carry within. What is already being given in your life? What does it look like to be vulnerable to divine grace today?
Today’s Prayer for Peace
Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.