May I have this Dance?

High School yearbooks certainly bring back many memories. They are filled with photos of friends, times of fun, events like Friday night football, class parties and high school dances. How could anyone forget those dances!?

The girls sat on one side of the gym floor chatting about the latest styles and the cutest guys on the other side, while those guys on the other side were simply thinking about how they could be the first in line for the sodas, snacks and maybe an extra burger.

As the band or DJ played the tunes, everyone was movin' and groovin' together on that gym floor, now designated dance floor, with the colored lights and crepe paper.

But, as the music changed and the time for the slow dances arrived, the tension began to build as boys returned to "their" side and the girls took "their" places on the other. The once occupied dance floor was now simply a great divide filled only with a sea of teenage emotions. The guys worked up the courage to go across while the girls sat anxiously wondering if they would receive that highly prized invitation from one of those guys who was sweating his way over to their side to ask if he may have this dance?

Do you remember those days?...Are the memories filled with the melodies and harmonies of laughter and fun, or do they reveal the scars of wounds of rejection, hurt, aloneness and shame? For me, it was the latter, until the day that I received a very special invitation and words of truth that changed my life forever.

I was sitting quietly in the morning stillness, and from deep within I began to see a dance floor like those from times gone past. There I was, sitting in the chair, with my head hung low, dreading the moment, knowing that I would not receive an invitation to dance. I would once again be rejected and feel the shame of not being chosen. Hearing footsteps, I sheepishly lifted my head to see that someone was walking toward me. There, now standing before me, was the Lord. He looked at me with a tender smile that just seemed to radiate His joy and delight. With his hand extended, He asked, "May I have this dance?" I timidly took His hand as He led me onto the dance floor. I will never forget the words He softly and gently spoke to me. Holding my face in His hands, He said," I have chosen you, you are Mine. I love you with an everlasting love. You are precious to Me. I am your Beloved, and you are Mine."

As I sat there in my room, my heart began to sense His healing touch. The wounds of past hurts, rejections, fears and shame were dissolved in an instant by His love, compassion, mercy and grace. I remembered that the words that I had heard Him say were not just everyday words. They were His eternal promises of truth written in the Scripture. They were His Word for me. In my Bible, I found and marked those verses in Isaiah, Jeremiah and Song of Solomon. I knew that those words would be forever etched upon my heart assuring me of His precious love and acceptance.

As you have read this story, does your heart identify with those places of being unaccepted, rejected and shamed? I have good news. Someone is here and He is walking from His side to yours. Look, He is coming to you. With a smile filled with joy and delight, He extends His hand to you and asks, "May I have this dance? He tells you, "I have chosen you, you are Mine. I love you with an everlasting love. You are precious to Me. I am your Beloved and you are Mine."

His words are true. They are His Word, His eternal promises of love and acceptance for you. Write them upon your heart and you will never ever be the same.

by Kathy Salerno