The Learn by Listening Dance
By Teri Dowell Ussery
I love to ballroom dance. Gliding effortlessly across the floor. Being swept away by the music. In the arms of a partner whose only job is to make me look beautiful.
Believe it or not, James’ letter to a bunch of early Jesus-believing Jews contained a dance as well.
“My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires” (James 1:19-20).
His letter is intended to help us put steps to our souls and feet to our faith. Having a belief that behaves, as one theologian put it, gives us instructions for living out this faith journey dance.
Quick to listen to God. To someone with whom you have conflict. To someone, you’ve hurt. To someone who has hurt you.
Slow to speak in defending your rights. Retaliating verbally. Justifying your actions.
Slow to anger means having a long fuse and a short memory.
“If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless.” James 1:26.
Teri is the wife of one and mother of five. She is passionate about teaching, writing and ministering to fellow sojourners. She and husband, Ken, spend their days working in ministry and their evenings and weekends raising their teenage son. Visit Teri at familyredesign.org.
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