Co- Partners In the Divine Dance
As a preteen I enjoyed watching reruns of the campy 1960’s Batman TV show. I had been obsessed with director Tim Burton’s late 80’s and early 90’s Batman films. I was eager to see other adventures of the caped crusader even if they felt a bit dated. There was a stark contrast in styles with the television show being bright, poppy, and lighthearted, while the Tim Burton films were dark, brooding, and intense. Besides the distinction in style the other main difference, at least for me, was Robin. Tim Burton’s films did not have the Boy Wonder as Batman’s sidekick. While the TV shows featured the Dynamic Duo in every installment. I could never quite make up my mind about whether Robin was an improvement or a distraction.
On the one hand it was cool seeing Batman with a teen sidekick. Especially because I could picture myself someday filling in this role. But On the other hand it also stretched credibility for me (because what’s not credible about a billionaire spending his nightlife in black armor beating up super villains?). The realism of Tim Burton’s movies made it harder to envision Batman enlisting a teenager to clean up the seedy underbelly of a major metropolitan city. My preteen imagination could envision Bruce Wayne as Batman fighting crime in the streets of Gotham. It was much more of a stretch for me to see Batman having teenage Dick Grayson as his partner in this endeavor.
Often we feel the same way about God. It is hard to imagine us partnering with God in any meaningful way. And yet this is how God has created and ordered the universe. In Genesis we read that as humanity we are created as God’s image bearers. We are to share in responsibility for the good creation of God and advance it further by co-creating more life-giving goodness out of life’s disorder. In Revelation we read that Jesus the Messiah invites his victorious ones to sit with him on the throne. You and I get to share in the royal authority of the Messiah in bringing about God’s Reign. Both of these are images of us sharing in a real and meaningful partnership with God to bring blessing to the world.
So it should come as little surprise that the Book of Exodus talks of the people bring forth their gifts to make tangible the tabernacle of God. God is always seeking partnership. Some have referred to the historic Christian conception of God as trinity as a “Divine Dance.” This Divine Dance of our Trinitarian God is always widening the circle, inviting others to experience, participate, and be immersed in God’s Love, grace, and blessings. In the Dance of Heaven, we each to hear the music and respond in joyful participation. We get to dance with God to the music of Heaven!
We may feel like blundering Boy Wonders at times, but this is our own insecurity at work. There are certainly ways we can be out of step or out of rhythm with God. Nevertheless, being immersed in God incorporates even these seeming missteps. God is always meeting us where we are and inviting us to participate more and more fully in the Divine Life. The only tragedy is not in how we dance, but if we fail to participate at all.