To my dismay, since my last visit, the whole store had been reorganized. Three children, though, were delighted with the slippery new white tiles that shimmered like a runway reflecting bright fluorescent lights overhead.
As we moved to the store's front corner with the dressing room, we reached the more stylish section of clothing, which was lit up even brighter than the other areas. An upbeat tempo caught my ear as the speakers poured forth the bouncy lyrics "She's a brick house...".
In seconds, Emerson and Amelia deemed the white tiles a "dance floor" and began their own version of dancing--more bouncing and twirling than anything else. In a world where image is so important, I had to smile at their innocence and lack of concern over who saw them or what they thought of their lack of dancing skills.
As a Christian who is also a Southern Baptist, I was raised in an environment where dancing was frowned upon. To this day, my denomination still frowns on dancing.
Perhaps that is why it has been such a surprise to me, learning the joy of dancing with my children.
As a child, I don't remember dancing with my mother or daddy, and yet these three constantly tug at my shorts, begging, "Dance, mommy! Dance with us!"
I have tried so many times to capture that joy, but their dancing is so full of giggles and perpetual movement that they are but a blur on film.
To them, there is no shame in dancing. At three and five, they have no concept of dirty dancing, bumping, grinding, or any such nonsense--nothing impure. To them, dancing means merely to move against a backdrop of music, whether audible or in their head--to leap, to jump, to twirl, to laugh, to grin until their faces hurt...to express joy in movement, most of the time while singing between gasps of breath. When I see their joy at singing praise songs to the Lord and dancing for Him, it's then that I agree with the Psalmist--
"Praise the LORD! Sing to the LORD a new song, And His praise in the congregation of the godly ones.
Let Israel be glad in his Maker; Let the sons of Zion rejoice in their King.
Let them praise His name with dancing; Let them sing praises to Him with timbrel and lyre.
For the LORD takes pleasure in His people; He will beautify the afflicted ones with salvation" (Ps. 149: 1-4).
Lunch plates still on the table waiting to be cleaned up, I smile, grab two little hands in mine, and swirl around the kitchen floor. I spin before the Lord in thanksgiving, singing amidst the laughter of children before it is gone.