Joy, Pain, and Dancing

Joy and pain, in sun and rain
You’re the same, oh, You never let go

I had to laugh when I heard these lyrics this morning from David Crowder Band’s You Never Let Go.

Just a few days ago, I’d gone to one of my favorite places to shop, the local thrift store. I love to get $80 jeans for $8 – sometimes with original tags still attached. I also like to browse the kitchen utensils section and pick up the oldies. They are the best. Give me well constructed wood and metal utensil over bulky or thin cheap plastic any day of the week.

This particular day, I did well with a pair of jeans, a heavy wood and metal grill spatula, and a couple cheese knives. What joy! When I returned home after all my errands, I took in the groceries and got distracted with other things in the house.

The next morning, I finished with some chores and remembered the treasures. I grabbed them from the car, slipped off my shoes at the door, and headed into the house. Then, the pain. The spatula slipped and went straight down like a dagger landing its metal edge squarely on my big toe.

That definitely felt like serious damage. I leaned down to feel the nail through my sock. Yep, structure had shifted. Usually, things seem to go better when I don’t focus too heavily on what has happened, so I didn’t freak out.

I began speaking out healing in Jesus’ name, set the items down and hobbled to the bathroom to remove my sock. Well, darn. Blood everywhere. Coming from the nailbed. I slapped a band-aid on and iced it for a while. I prayed that there was no fracture to the toe or damage to the nailbed and that it would heal quickly—I had a dance to do on Sunday at church with the other dancers.

One thing that I have gained through learning about physical healing according to the Bible, is that you must believe and not doubt. This takes practice. It often means acting as though you are completely healthy. So, I slowed down my steps to walk as normally as I could and went about my day.

Give thanks in all circumstances. 1 Thessalonians 5:18

That evening I changed the bandage and took a closer look. I could see where the nail was broken at the nailbed. I gave God thanks for this. If it had not broken and bled, I may have had to deal with a trip to the doctor to release the pressure from the blood. I took a Motrin, prayed that the pain would leave, and went to bed.

Day two was a little more difficult. I began favoring that toe to keep the pressure off. However, I sensed that I should walk normally. So I slowed down again and went about my day. Towards the end, it was pretty uncomfortable and worry was creeping in. What about Sunday’s dance? What shoes did I have to wear with an injured toe?

I texted the dance leader and told her what happened. I would try to dance, but I probably wouldn’t do any other dancing during the worship time. I took two Tylenol’s, prayed, and went to bed. At this point I wasn’t sure I’d even go to church in the morning.

As I woke on Sunday morning, I wiggled my toes a bit to test things out. What?! No pain! I got up and walked around. Absolutely no pain. I could hardly believe it! Well, praise God, thank you Jesus!

Alright! I’m going to church. The real test would be putting on shoes. Again. No pain. Wow! OK. I’m going to dance, but I’ll take it easy. Just the group dance.

After arriving at church, I shared the good news with the dance leader. As worship began, another “test” came my way. Did I really think and believe I was healed? That nail is still black and blue…

Faith without works is dead. James 2:17

Many of our pains and sicknesses are spiritual issues manifesting in a physical form. Faith requires an action. To believe in healing is at first a passive act upon that faith. But true and complete belief requires an outward act. If I was healed, why not dance instead of holding back?

I remembered when I was attacked with back pain one Sunday. A friend prayed for me and told me to dance anyway. I did, and the pain left. There have been many Sundays that one of my knees might suddenly hurt. But when I danced anyway, the pain left.

We have great power in our minds to overcome physical issues. How much more power for the person who has Christ the Healer living within?

With God all things are possible (Matthew 19:26)

All things are possible for the one who believes (Mark 9:23)

…Only believe (Mark 5:36)

I had no pain, but I remembered the injury. Would dancing make things worse again? Was I healed enough? I prayed a rebuke to any lingering thoughts of the trauma (take your thoughts captive, 2 Corinthians 10:5), and went out to dance in praise to my God. He is good!

Joy and pain, in sun and rain
You’re the same, oh, You never let go

He never let’s go. He is there cheering us on as we work to know and believe every word in His book. He delights in teaching us to hear Him through His Holy Spirit. He dances for joy over us and with us when we trust Him over all others. He is our proud Papa when we step out in faith to act on our beliefs. In joy and pain, He is always there. This particular time, He turned my mourning into dancing! Thank you, Lord.