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“David Dancing before the Ark” by James Tissot.  The ephod might have been a simple robe like this, or it might have been a loincloth.

Last night as I was making dinner I put on a Fernando Ortega CD.

My seven-year-old began moving to the music, something reminiscent of interpretive dance and ballet, though he has had no instruction and has seriously no chance at all of picking up such graceful moves from his parents.

At the end of “All Creatures of our God and King” my son announced that he wanted to dance to that song for next year’s talent show.

My initial reaction was less than enthusiastic.  I’m a rather reserved person.  I’d be somewhat embarrassed for him if he did something like that, something so…so…contrary to our culture’s gender stereotypes.  I wouldn’t want him to be labeled or made fun of.

And then it hit me:  I was responding in my mind like Michal did to David.

Are you familiar with the story?

And David was dancing before the Lord with all his might, and David was wearing a linen ephod.  So David and all the house of Israel were bringing up the ark of the Lord with shouting and the sound of the trumpet.

Then it happened as the ark of the Lord came into the city of David that Michal the daughter of Saul looked out of the window and saw King David leaping and dancing before the Lord; and she despised him in her heart.

My precious boy was dancing before the Lord, in jeans and no shirt, joyfully moving his feet and lifting his hands to heaven, rejoicing in a song of praise that he has long loved.  Not unlike David danced before the Lord to celebrate the return of the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem.

And I was thinking about what other people would think of it if they saw it.  Not unlike Michal, who despised David for his exuberant worship and criticized him with biting sarcasm.

My son wasn’t the one missing something–I was.

“I will celebrate before the Lord,” David responded.  “I will be more lightly esteemed than this!”

Oh for the freedom to express our love for the Lord, giving Him the worship that He is due without allowing the fear of man to hinder us.

Am I willing to be undignified in the views of the world?  Am I willing to come to God as a joyful child?  Without reserve?  Without concern?

Am I willing to give my children the freedom to do so?

My boy may not remember this idea by the time the talent show comes around next year, but I at least am taking his example to heart.

Has the Lord ever taught you a lesson through the simple, unreserved faith of your children?  Please share in the comments below!