David’s Dance

“When the Spirit of the Lord comes upon my heart I will dance as David danced!” It is a classic song that come from the story of David dancing in his undies through the streets. I spent all day today working on a chart for our worship team to play the awesome arrangement Fred Hammond did of this song. I am a huge Finale! fan, but sometimes I want to do things in it that aren’t possible. I did my whole chart and then I decided that I wanted the soprano voice to move down into the tenor part, in essence flipping over the inversion. However, I couldn’t figure out how to make the program do it automatically. I ended up giving in and spending about 45mins re-voicing all the chords in the song.

The way NCF-STL has been doing this song is an arrangement that has a Jewish Klezmer feel to it: imagine ‘Fiddler on the Roof.’ It’s fun, kind-of. But Hammond’s arrangement gives it a pump of adrenaline. It also uses a strong funk groove, gospel harmonies, gospel choir cliche’s and lush jazz voicings. I don’t know where the song comes from, but I highly doubt that it has any origin in actual Jewish folk music. In our context, performing a song in a Klezmer style would be inappropriate. As far as I know, we have no Messianic Jews in our congregation, and if we did, they would probably not appreciate this song because it is not from their tradition at all. However, we are an urban church in the heart of the inner-city where performing hard-core funk and hot contemporary gospel is completely appropriate.

. . .Like David danced . . . Are we supposed to remove our clothes in worship? No, but David danced before the Lord removing his kingly robes, the symbols of his exalted political position. His wife, Michal, despised him for leaping and dancing with all his might. She wanted him to be more kingly. When the Holy Spirit fills your heart in worship, it brings humility. David humbled himself in worship of the Lord, and it inspired him to jump around like a child before the Lord.

I was at a Christmas party last month where a band was playing. None of the adults were very comfortable with dancing; we had way too much pride to embarrass ourselves. But there were two little girls who were twirling and leaping all night to the music. They felt safe and secure exposed in the middle of the dance floor. They knew that they didn’t have to impress anyone that night; they had no suave, cool reputation to protect.

I kind of imagine David dancing this way: completely resting in the joy of being accepted in God’s presence.

I hope people in the church feel like dancing when we play this song next week.

  1. #1 by marion on January 13, 2005 - 9:03 pm

    Sometime, like Michal, we confuse humility with humiliation.

  2. #2 by Sarah on January 14, 2005 - 10:55 am

    except that david was a jew 😉

  3. #3 by Anonymous on January 17, 2005 - 11:31 am

    Hey Kirk,This has nothing to do with this post, but I’m commenting here anyway. It is great to see that you finally got a blog, however, I think you should move it. As one of the adminstrators of terrablogs (http://www.terrablogs.com), the people who host atlblogs, chattablogs, covblogs, etc., I could hook you up with a blog on one of the terrablog domains, probably chattablogs at this point, since you have some connection with Chattanooga. Heck, Anthony Bradley has a chattablog (http://bradley.chattablogs.com) and he has nothing to do with Chattanooga any more. Sarah could get one as well, on chattablogs or even covblogs if she wanted. In fact, if you got enough people up there in STL who wanted a blog (Barry Henning, Danny Mitchell :), etc.) we might even set up a domian for all of you, stlblogs or something. The advantage that you would gain from this is a “blogging community” where it makes it easier for friends to keep track of each other, because we have “blogging portals” that give you a snapshot of what is going with everyone on that domain (http://www.atlblogs.com, for example). You would also gain some nice, personal service. On big domains like blogger.com if something goes wrong you have to figure out how to get some service from a huge company, Google in this case. Good luck. If something goes wrong with your blog on chattablogs you just have to send me an email and I’ll look into it as soon as I can. You just can’t beat knowing the administrator. So, all that to say, send me an email (ben_at_coptix_dot_com) if you want to move over to chattablogs. We can probably even move the posts that you have already made on blogger so that you won’t lose any of your archives.Hope to hear from you,Ben Huffine

  4. #4 by Anonymous on January 17, 2005 - 9:07 pm

    hi, i just stumbled here from katie’s blog. i’ll probably come back because i’m the worship and arts guy at my church and would be interested to hear about your experiences. i’m in school as well, working on a music degree.first a couple questions: what is your musical background?secondly, do you see yourself doing this for a long time? or is it a temporary stop before seminary or something?abeabe.atlblogs.com

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