The other day, I was carrying a load of folded laundry up to Sugar Plum’s room so she could put it away. From the base of the stairs I could hear her music playing loudly, so when I reached her bedroom door, I wasn’t surprised to find her dancing around the room and singing one of her favorite songs at the top of her lungs. In fact, she was so preoccupied it took her a little while to notice me standing at the door.
For a minute and thirty-nine seconds (Yes, I timed it. I wanted to see how long she’d go before catching sight of me!), I smiled as I watched Sugar Plum singing happily and dancing joyfully. As I watched, I also took in the lyrics of the song she was enjoying. As The Newsboys belted out Live With Abandon, a particular set of the song’s lyrics made me think.
There’s gotta be so much more to life than this
A higher calling that I missed
I want my life to count, every breath
I wanna live with abandon
Give You all that I am
Every part of my heart Jesus
I place in Your hands
I wanna live with abandon
When Sugar Plum finally noticed me, embarrassment set in. Dancing came to a complete and sudden halt, singing immediately ceased, and the volume was quickly muted. In return, I gave a wink, a smile, a back pat, then dropped off the laundry, and moved on to my next task. But for the rest of the day, two questions kept gnawing at my brain. What it would mean for me to live my life for Christ with abandon? Why wasn’t I doing so?
For me, living with abandon would mean completely surrendering to Christ’s will, singing His chorus, dancing to His groove. It would mean suppressing the urge to choreograph my own steps and denying my desire to break out into freestyle mode in the middle of His polished floors. Ultimately it means embracing this: He must become greater; I must become less. (John 3:30). Much easier said than done. But why?
Because I don’t fully trust God and I worry about what might happen if I move outside of my comfort zone.
Because I like to be in control and I foolishly believe that the ride is better when I’m the one in the driver’s seat.
Because I’m scared and the thought of stepping out into the unknown frightens me and prevents me from moving forward.
Oh, how I long to have to the freedom Sugar Plum enjoyed as she danced to her favorite song! The truth is I can have that freedom and you can too if we give God the right of way in our lives. By yielding to Him, I show that I trust the choices He makes for my life. I show that I’m willing to move out of the way so He can lead. I show that my love for Him is greater than my fear of the unknown.
I want to live with abandon, but not the reckless kind that throws all caution to the wind. I want the purposeful and Christ-centered kind of abandon that causes me to “lay aside every weight” (Hebrews 12:1), draws me closer to the Lord, and equips me to live the life He’s called me to live. Only then will I be able to dance happily and sing loudly to a song He has composed just for me.
© 2015, Andrea Thorpe. All rights reserved.