For some reason, Mom suddenly just got on my mind tonight! I started looking through the devotions she wrote for Friday morning cheer breakfasts because there, I can still find her words of wisdom. This devotion she wrote back in 2007 touched my heart tonight, and I hope it does yours too:
Let me tell you a quick story about Cassie. When she was a little girl – like 2 or 3 years old – I caught her dancing on my coffee table. I immediately asked her in a “sharp” voice – “Cassie Blanton, get down from there; what in the world are you doing?” The tone in my voice should have been a warning to her but it wasn’t. She just laughed and as she jumped down from the table to run to her room, she told me “I do a lot of things that I am not supposed to do when you are not looking”. Wow. I stood there stunned at her honesty. She was not old enough to understand that she had just told her herself! She was just excited about the fun she was having!
Now, Cassie is a senior in high school. Some of you are there and many of you will be there so soon. I would say to each of you “I hope you dance”. What does this mean? Does it mean that I am encouraging you to do things you shouldn’t when no one is looking? No! Absolutely not! I am encouraging you to dance on tables! No!
I am encouraging you to be a participant in life. To enjoy it. To see the gifts that are in it. To see the giver of those gifts. That song says “I hope you never lose your sense of wonder” and “May you never take one single breath for granted”. It also says “when you get the choice to sit it out or dance I hope you dance “. This is all great advice.
I am adding a little something to the advice – I hope you dance like someone is watching. I hope you have integrity and character. I once heard that character is who you are “in the dark”. It is who you are on the inside. The Bible says in Proverbs 27:19 “As in water face reflects face, so the heart of man reflects the man”. In Matthew, the Bible says yoru words will reflect what is in your heart. What you are on the inside will come out and people will see it and hear it. Someone will notice. Even if you don’t know they notice. It could be that they see you as a hypocrite – another reason not to be a Christian – or it could be that they see you as a person who is who they say they are.
Who are you if you think your Mom is not looking or a teacher is not looking or a friend is not looking? Are you the same person regardless who is watching? Does what is inside of you match what you show on the outside? If you manage to sneak cookies out of the pantry to eat them before dinner and it doesn’t mess up your dinner, is it wrong? If you manage to pass a note in class when a teacher told you this was against the rules, is it OK because you did not get caught? If you talk all through the sermon on Sunday but your Mom does not know, is it OK?
I hope your heart overflows with goodness, compassion, kindness. Then, your “dance in life” can have such a profound impact on the lives of others. That impact can start with this team. Make sure your heart is pure and clean and that you truly care about the life God has given you and the people God has put in it. Your response will reflect your heart and the impact will be amazing.
Thanks for your words of encouragement and wisdom, Mom!