Flamingo & Flamenco

I didn’t know the difference between flamingos and flamenco.

But Different They Are

A flamingo is a large pink bird, a rather ridiculous looking bird with an oddly shaped beak.

flamingo

But Flamenco is a stunning presentation of dance, Spanish music with classical guitars, and non stop clapping. It was athletic but graceful, simple but complex, I was mesmerized. 

flamenco

The Audience!

During the performance the audience called out affirmation to the dancers, in Spanish. Without words the dancers told the ageless story of love. Their facial expressions and dancing revealed attraction, pursuit, heartbreak, and happiness. It was sad and celebratory. I loved it.

During the intermission a local book publisher explained to me that Flamenco was born in the underground during the Spanish Inquisition. Ferdinand and Isabella chose Catholicism to unite Spain and asked the Pope’s permission to launch an inquisition to purify the people of Spain. 

The expression of dance was most likely an unacceptable art form to those tasked with purifying the people. So the commoners went underground and found a way to celebrate happiness and sadness, they called it Flamenco.

Anyway

My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed the show. We left uplifted and so pleasantly surprised. Its life affirming to see performers who’s passionate talents developed over years in the pursuit of perfection. I appreciated their art and artistry.

Me, A Dancer?

Nope, not even a little. Dancing wasn’t encouraged when I was growing up and it didn’t seem prudent after I was grown. But from ballet to flamenco I am drawn to its beauty.

On A Different Note

Dancing in the Old Testament is often mentioned as a means of worship and praise to God:

“… a time to mourn and a time to dance.” Ecclesiastes 3:4

“Again you will take up your timbrels and go out to dance with delight.” Jeremiah 31:4

“Joy is gone from our harts; our dancing has turned to mourning.” Lamentations 5:15

And Finally

“You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing your praises and not be silent. Lord my God, I will praise you forever.” Psalms 30:11-12

To Close

Mercy Me released a song,

“Will I Dance For You Jesus?”

I don’t know if I’ll dance for him. If I do it won’t be a Flamenco, probably more like a Flamingo. I’ll likely jump up and down and scream and shout with my oversized beak.

If that’s dancing, then a dancer am I. 

Shalom

Quiet Moment to Connect

2015-09-08-14.21Have you ever been singing a well-known song when, wham – out of nowhere, the lyrics just knock you over? That happened to me last Sunday while singing a much loved classic, “How Great Thou Art.” Here are the words that reached out and gripped my heart.

When through the woods, and forest glades I wander,
And hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees.
When I look down, from lofty mountain grandeur
And see the brook, and feel the gentle breeze.

Stuart Hine, an English missionary to Poland, wrote these lyrics. He was moved to do so by a poem by Swedish preacher, Carl Boberg entitled, “O, Great God.” Hine added the lyrics and made a new arrangement of the melody that Boberg gave to the poem, making it into the song we know as, “How Great Thou Art.”

Turns out that Hine had some unforgettable experiences in the Carpathian mountains which inspired him to write the song. The mountains were special to him and from these mountain experiences he completed the song. I find that looking down from lofty mountain grandeur inspires me also. I treasure the brooks and streams and gentle mountain breezes, all of which remind me of the Spirit of God.

Our Father is also in the urban centers with their crowds of people, cars, and buildings. He may be harder to find in the city, or maybe city life makes it harder for me to look for him?

Be encouraged to find a quiet moment to reconnect with your Creator. It takes faith and our heart’s desire to find Him when surrounded by so much that discourages closeness with the Father. But, try anyway. He is there and wants to be found. And, He’s worth it. Thank you Mr. Boberg and Mr. Hine for “How Great Thou Art.”