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There are many battles to fight, mountains to climb, and missions to complete. And God has given us the heart of a warrior to do just this. But we can miss the beauty and richness of life when we get stuck in a warrior’s mindset. Remembering to dance helps us to remember why we’re fighting in the first place.

It’s been said, “never give a man a sword who can’t dance.” There’s much wisdom here, as the man who cannot dance is prone to fight just for the sake of fighting. He doesn’t know how to enjoy life, and the battle has become his life.

Of course, we remain impotent when we just dance and never learn to wield a sword. But, together, we wield the sword for the purpose of creating and protecting the beauty of life symbolized in the dance. In short, this is the meaningful integration of our work and the rest of life.

To be sure, we were created to work, and our work provides us with much satisfaction and meaning. But we cannot focus on work exclusively and neglect the rest of our life and relationships. We become a one-dimensional man living only to work when we do. And we risk merely spinning our wheels – wondering why all our hard work and effort doesn’t seem to matter. Our work quickly becomes an empty grind when it’s not connected to bringing more life and goodness into the world.

Knowing how to dance means we know how to drink deeply of life – basking in the beauty of the moment for its own sake. Perhaps this is taking a walk with our wife, watching our kids play in the backyard, or enjoying a good laugh with a friend. It might also be as simple as savoring our morning coffee, listening to good music, or delighting in the grandeur of the night sky. Whatever it looks like, we’re reminded that life is more than just work. And we’re left ultimately barren and alone when we attempt to live otherwise.  

In the end, fight courageously without forgetting to dance. Remembering the beauty of life keeps your sword measured and wielded with meaning.


Dr. Corey Carlisle

Licensed marriage and family therapist and certified sex therapist - providing Christian counseling and soul care to individuals and couples, with a special emphasis on developing the masculine soul. Suwanee, GA 30024

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