Something to Think About...

      I heard a message one Sunday morning entitled: “When It All Falls Apart, What Will You Do?” In light of  recent events, what is really important? The things that happen in one part of our world could happen anywhere, at any time, to anyone. The devastation in Japan is one of many that have literally rocked the foundations of unsuspecting people, and no one has the right to say “This is God’s judgment on them because…(fill in the blank)”. In fact, the Word says the opposite:

Now there were some present at that time who told Jesus about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. Jesus answered, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans because they suffered this way? I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish. Or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them—do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish.”
 (Luke 13:1-5 NIV)

     No one understands why these things happen but when they do, they affect us all. We are all connected to others in some way, whether it is by blood, friendship, aquaintance or just because we all share the earth as our temporary home to carry out our God-given purpose. This is not the time to make comparisons of how one group of people respond to tragedy vs. another, or to start making doomsday prophecies. It is time to stop, think about the direction that we are going in, and make sure that we are found doing God's will. Let the pettiness go...if you have something that you need to settle with a friend, enemy or family member, do it today! Because when it all falls apart...what will really matter?
     Please enjoy this thought-provoking video of "Homeless" by Ladysmith Black Mambazo and Sarah McClachlan...


Be Open!

     Have you ever watched dance or mime ministry videos, or attended a dance ministry concert and seen the same songs done over and over again? It seems that the most popular songs are the ones that are chosen to minister, most of the time.  One potential problem with doing this is that the congregation or audience will not even see the message of the dance, but will respond to the familiar song because they know it so well.  As humans, we want to "fit in" and do what is popular or acceptable to the public, but what is God really leading us to do?  There are songs by some of the same artists that are not as well known, that would be very effective as a visual message.  Even older songs, songs that are of a completely different style that what we are familiar with, or traditional hymns in a contemporary version are other choices.  How about even dancing to scripture, poetry, or spoken word?

     Don't get stuck in a box!  Take the time to listen to different styles of worship music in different genres and broaden your horizons.  Ministries that are most effective are the ones who do their homework It's always easy to do what is common, but do you really want to be like everyone else?  God has given everyone a unique assignment, and it doesn't look like anyone else's.   Read what Jocelyn Richard of Visual Praise Ministries in Augusta, GA says about musical choices:

"...The point is, as far as music is concerned, be open. Of itself, music is not good or bad. God created music before the world changed it in directions contrary to His intentions. Therefore, in listening to music, be attentive to be sure the lyrics point to Jesus.  The music can be, Christian contemporary, worship and praise, traditional hymns or jazz"*
     When we change the way we think about music, it will change the way we minister in movement.  If you don't know where to start your search for new music, www.Pandora.com is an internet radio station that allows listeners to create their own radio stations based on their musical tastes.  You can use the service for 40 hours a month free of charge, or have unlimited use for a reasonable price.  Let's make it our goal in 2011 to enlarge our territories and our musical inventories!

       Enjoy this video of SMBC's God's Anointed Vessels Dancing to Be Open by Richard Smallwood...

 *The Praise Dance Life: http://www.thepraisedancelife.com/2010/12/-choosing-music-for-worship-dance-choreography.html