Posted by: JennyRain | May 3, 2007

Dancing to the Music of the Wait

Relationships have been the source of more angst than the coming of modernity.

Why do some people sail through life, meet the person of their dreams and live happily ever after while others struggle just to meet anyone at all? Everyone around seems to have great stories of meeting their mate in the most random of scenes, but when it comes to our dumb luck, well I guess we are just …

Lookin’ for love in all the wrong places
Lookin’ for love in too many faces
Searchin’ their eyes, lookin’ for traces
Of what I’m dreamin’ of…

We are of the terminally-single breed, uncoupled, unwanting-ly unattached, solitarily-separated from the married club, and decisively undated. Many of us do not have to worry about getting married because we can not even get a date! It is not that the pool of possibilities is shrinking, it has totally dried up.

Just enjoy the wait.

We are told to enjoy the waiting period of single-dom. Enjoy not being attached, enjoy the freedom of not having to make joint-decisions, enjoy the ability to pursue, explore, and have adventures in the world before we are “tied down.” Truthfully, it feels more like being locked in a fortressed castle where all we can do is look out over the kingdom and watch life happen rather than being a part of the fun.

We are told to engage in self-control in this waiting place. Practice purity. Desist from debauchery. Withhold wantonness. In other words, enjoy entering your sexual peak with no mating prospects in sight. Sounds like a grand adventure! Our entire body is screaming “go” with nowhere to go to and no one to go there with. Practicing self-control in this place of waiting is an oxy-moron, a dichotomy of opposites, a pure impossibility!

It is like standing in front of a dance floor, anxiously waiting to engage in the rumba of life…Your heart is thumping wildly to the inviting rhythms, your feet begin to shuffle out a pattern, your body is engaging the music, but then you open your eyes and realize there is no one for you to dance the rumba with. You want to dance, you are ready to dance, it is time to dance. Now WAIT!

Is waiting possible in this place?

There are many people who invite you to dance the tango instead. They share promises of a tango you will never forget. “You will be transformed, enraptured, captivated by me,” they promise, “You won’t have to lift a finger, just follow me and we will tango as you have never tangoed before.” So you tango, and for a moment, it is heavenly. Nothing can compare to the glorious melding of your bodies moving across the dance floor in an enviable rhythm. But all too soon the music fades and before you can catch your breath your partner has vanished into the crowd like smoke in the air.

You are left with only a broken shoe-lace to remind you that the tango actually happened. Other couples rumba around you, oblivious to your presence, as you stand alone, still waiting for your turn. Each time you tango, the passion you once felt pokes at you with a guilty insistence that there is so much more to the dance than this.

Wait well…

But those who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength… (Isa 40:31). To “wait upon” in the Greek means to “bind together (by twisting); to be gathered; be joined; to meet; to cleave.” The essence of what “waiting upon” and this waiting place are supposed to symbolize is perfect and complete union. It is also more simply stated as marriage.

Perfect waiting becomes a complete cleaving of our being with the Divine. What we perceive as failure (our single-ness) becomes a place of beginning consciousness where we can meet ourselves and meet the One who created us. In the immovable waiting place, you are not stagnating, you are growing, you are transforming, and you are becoming, as you cleave and reach out in a hopeful, anticipatory waiting. And in this place, the strength to wait well is imbued.

Just as we receive a new identity and name when we marry another, so in this place, where spirit unites with Spirit, we surrender in love and allow Christ to redefine, strengthen, and remold us as we wait. If we are willing to surrender, of course.

It is where we finally begin to live from a divine presence working Itself out through our members rather than a bodily one striving to reach the Divine of its own accord. The waiting place is the place where lover and beloved cease to be two entities and instead become one. As we choose to embrace the fruit of love through our lives, Divine Love pours into us and strengthens us with self-control to wait for a rumba of our own.

Our desires often do not decrease, rather they are redirected to face the One in who all longing is perfected. We begin to see that tangoing with an amateur apparently does not compare to a rumba with a professional, and rather than pain and hurt, the wait begins to have purpose and direction.

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