14: And David danced before the Lord with all his might....
21: David retorted to Michal, "I was dancing before the Lord, who chose me above your father and his family! He appointed me as the leader of Israel, the people of the Lord. So I am willing to act like a fool in order to show my joy in the Lord.
22: Yes, and I am willing to look even more foolish than this...!"
David tells Michal that he dances before the Lord because the Lord chose him above Saul and his descendants to be the leader of Israel--in other words, the King of Israel. I am sure David had many other reasons for dancing before the Lord considering the fact that God had saved David from both a bear and a lion and had given David victory over the giant Goliath, but I guess becoming King of a nation loved by God would hold precedence over everything else.
As I read David's retort to Michal, I can't help but think of my own reasons for dancing before the Lord, for showing my own Joy in the Lord.....(in no particular order):
1. I am here. I have almost died several times in my life, but yet here I am, 45 and still here.
- When I was about 3 years old, I almost drowned. My parents were the directors of a church camp and Dad was repairing the olympic size swimming pool. While water was running into the deep end, my brother and I ran down the incline to touch our toes to the water. Dad was working at the other end of the pool, but when I slipped and went right under, you'd think he'd been standing immediately beside me considering how fast he got to me! All I remember is seeing the smiley face on his black sneakers.
- As a teenager, I choked on a piece of meat during supper. My brother had to perform the Heimlich and saved my life.
- I had a car accident that should have killed me, but didn't. I stupidly tried to pass a school bus on the way home from school. When I realized I didn't have enough time to pass, I slammed on my breaks too hard which sent my car spinning in the road until it careened over the edge of a ravine, landing with the front end up at the top of the embankment. Miraculously, I walked away.
- In my early twenties, just days before my wedding, I had another car accident that should have killed me, but again, didn't. I had called my mom before I left work and asked if she wanted to meet me for lunch at my favorite place. She'd agreed. As I didn't want to eat in my work uniform, I decided to race home to change clothes real quick since I had a few minutes before she would be able to leave work. As I was coming up to a cool hill, I did my normal going too fast up and over the hill. Usually, that wasn't a problem, but this time, I didn't slow down enough in time to go around the sharp curve. I went off the right side of the road, jerked the steering wheel to the left, causing the car to swerve to the opposite side of the road where it hit a ditch, went front end over back--at least twice, took out a bush-like tree in the front yard of a friend's house, and landed upside down with the roof caved in so badly that had I been any taller, I would either have broken my neck or it would have killed me. I walked away from that one, too.
- At 29, while I was pregnant, my doctors found a cyst on my left ovary. At first, it was about the size a golf ball, if not a little smaller. Within 6 weeks, though, it grew to the size of a grapefruit. They determined that it had to come out, so they operated while I was 20 weeks pregnant! They called it a "tumor," but, Praise the Lord, it was "benign," whatever that means.
- In my late thirties, I had a severe infection from diverticulitis
- Since that time, I have dealt with other health issues such as chronic gastritis, two hernias--that I still have because they don't bother me enough to do anything about yet, severe back pain, severe shoulder pain, and others. I have also had mental health issues such as depression and anxiety.
2. God has restored my marriage. Just a few short years ago, I was ready to call my marriage Quits-ville. I was DONE. I hated my husband. I was angry with my husband. The very sight of him sent me into a rage. But yet God has given me a new love and respect for this man I once hated.
3. God has given me my Son, Samuel. Yes, he is a "rainbow baby."
4. Through each of my 3 child losses, God has been with me. Remember that "Footprints" poem? God has carried me a LOT over the past 17 years.
5. I have AMAZING parents who love and serve God with all their hearts, all their minds, all their souls, and all their strength and who love me unconditionally---and they demonstrate their love for me in a thousand different ways. I am truly blessed.
6. I have AWESOME siblings, Kenny (11 months older) and Katie (7 years younger), whom I love with every fiber of my being and who I know love me, regardless of whether we communicate with one another every day or only a few times a year.
7. I have WONDERFUL extended family members who make me laugh as no one else can. We enjoy being together and again, even if we don't see each other or communicate with one another for years, when we get together again, the laughter and the love has a strength that can only come from God above.
8. I have a job that I love. I know that I am doing what God called me to do in my teaching. Even at the highest moments of stress, I still enjoy my students.
9. I have a wonderful home with air conditioning and heat and all the other fantastic comforts that make a home.
10. I have a great car that I call "Lady Grey."
11. He delights in me!!!
12. He loves me so much that He gave His ONLY Son so that I might have eternal life with Him.
13. He sings over me with Joy!!!
And my list can go on and on because God has done so very much for me. Any one of the items on this list is sufficient to demonstrate the reason why I am willing to act the fool to show my joy in the Lord! Granted, I don't always dance to demonstrate my joy, but I do sing with great enthusiasm (if not perfect pitch). I play the tambourine that my Grandpa Keefer used to play in church. Honestly, I'd love to dance, too, but singing and playing the tambourine at the same time are challenging enough! Whenever I attempt to add dancing into the mix, I either have to stop singing or I have to stop playing the tambourine! I can't do all 3 at once!
I try to find other ways to demonstrate my joy in the Lord, such as doing a daily "What brings me Joy?" post on Facebook. I continually seek for and read scripture pertaining to Joy. I have read a dozen books or more on Joy. I try to spread His joy and to demonstrate His love to the best of my ability.
Will (do) you make a fool of yourself to show your joy in the Lord? What are your reasons for rejoicing in Him? How do you demonstrate your joy?