In my Bird Songs Blog Post, I shared that I'm not a bird fan. I discovered today that there's one bird that I adore. It's orange (my favorite color), petite, and the cutest thing ever. If you're suspicious... you should be because it's my niece. She was in a dance recital tonight called The Bird Story (almost enough to keep me away... but she drew me in. Maybe a tactic to get me over my bird aversion? It worked... for tonight anyway.) She was the most adorable orange bird ever. While this orange bird can be shy, tonight, she was a star. She grinned from ear to ear, performed brilliantly, and got a medal for her amazing performance.
The dance instructor warned us at the beginning that this recital was for beginning dancers. She set our expectations up front. The girls were from 3 to 8ish with little to no dance experience. And she let us know that they may just stand there or talk or wave or even dance. And dance they did.
One of my favorite moments (besides watching my niece do her thang, of course) was from the bluebirds. Three precious girls came out on stage and one girl was NOT happy. Her lip quivered, her eyes filled with tears, and she looked like she wanted to run away... far, far away. The song began and she just stood there - like a statue - with her lip trembling and tears welling up in her eyes. The instructor stopped the music, gave her a hug, and had them start over. This girl, in spite of her fear and trembling lip, danced. And while I didn't catch a smile from her (in fact, she may have frowned the entire dance), she did successfully complete the performance.
The verse that popped into my head as I watched this terrified girl was Joshua 1:9: Be strong and be brave. Do not be terrified and do not lose hope. For I am the Lord your God and I will be with you everywhere you go. This bluebird WAS strong and brave. She performed in spite of being terrified. She HAD other options... like being a statue, or letting the tears flow and throwing a fit, or running off the stage and refusing to dance. But she chose courage. She was brave. She persevered. And I do believe that her group got the loudest applause of the evening.
How do you respond in situations that terrify you? Do you muster up the courage to do the task, knowing that God will be with you everywhere you go? Do you run the other direction like Jonah did? Do you throw a fit? Refuse to even give it a try? We can learn a lot about courage from this little bluebird... because when she came out for her second dance, she didn't have tears in her eyes. She danced without hesitation. She may have even found a bit of a smile. After exercising her courage during dance #1, the second dance wasn't nearly as hard. She knew what to expect. She survived. She could dance again... with less fear.
Let's all be a bluebird. Muster up the courage. Choose to trust God, even when it doesn't make sense. Even when you don't have all the answers. Even if your lip is trembling and your eyes are filled with tears. Because Proverbs 3:5-6 tell us to Trust God from the bottom of your heart; don’t try to figure out everything on your own. Listen for God’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; He’s the one who will keep you on track (The Message). Remember, God is with you everywhere you go. So be strong and be brave. And dance like you've never danced before... even if you're dancing with tears and a trembling lip. Because you can do this!