“Life is a dance, you learn as you go,” according to a classic country tune sung by John Michael Montgomery. It’s true that we can’t put life on hold until we think we know it all, so we might as well jump in with both feet, take some risks, be adventurous. As the song continues, we learn that the crooner avoids taking a risk and misses the opportunity to “dance” with his teenage crush.
What I am proposing in this blog is that not only life but marriage is a dance. As someone who enjoys partner dances (such as waltz, rumba, tango and swing), I have discovered a number of parallels between dancing with a partner and Christian marriage.
And I’m not alone in my observations. Moveir Ballroom posts this explanation for “Why Ballroom Dance?” on its website: At Moveir, ballroom is much more than dancing — it’s a way to build relationships, appreciate different personalities, and ultimately love on people. There are parallels between the technical aspects of dance and the skills in relating to each other.
To begin exploring marriage through this lens of dance, consider leading and following. Traditionally in partner dancing, the man is the leader and the woman is the follower. Perhaps that makes modern women feel “second class.” But is following really any less significant than leading? In the movie Take the Lead starring Antonio Banderas, the dance instructor tells his students that each role (leading and following) requires the same strength, energy and effort. In other words, it takes “two to tango,” as the saying goes. Without both a leader and a follower, there is no dance. Though the roles are different, they are equally important to the dance.
I would propose that the same is true about the husband’s and wife’s roles in Christian marriage. Scripture assigns spiritual leadership of the household to the husband. But that does not discount the value of the wife. Christianity affirms the value of both male and female, created in the image of God. Paul instructs men to “love your wives, just as Christ loved the church….” (Eph. 5:25, NIV) That single verse ascribes great responsibility to the husband and great value to the wife.
Both life and marriage can be a beautiful dance — full of adventure, intimacy and joy — this is how our Creator intended us to live!
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Copr. 2009 MarriageDance