FIRST-PERSON: Dancing on Daddy's feet

by Ginger LaGrone Tucker, posted Thursday, July 25, 2019 (one month ago)

AMARILLO, Texas (BP) -- Some of my favorite childhood memories are when my parents would move the coffee table out of the way, roll up the rug and dance in our living room.

With Marty Robbins or Jim Reeves or Elvis on the turntable, they danced. Sometimes we four children would just watch, wide-eyed and admiring, as our parents laughed and moved with such graceful precision. Sometimes we danced alongside them with flailing arms and legs, trying to imitate.

Sometimes, my favorite times, we got to dance with them. Daddy would pick us up in his strong arms, holding us securely as he and Mother danced. We would all cry out for our turns. "Me next! Me next!" We wished it would never end.

As I got a bit older, I learned to dance on Daddy's feet. I didn't need to look down and watch my own feet. I didn't need to plan my steps because he was in control. He was dancing; he was leading.

Sometimes as we danced, I would decide I could do it on my own and would step off his feet to try my own dance. I couldn't do it -- I kept stepping on his feet and tripping myself.

Daddy would say, "Honey, stay on my feet and let me lead. Let me show you." We could even master some fancy moves, as long as he led. All I had to do was to gaze up in his loving, laughing eyes. Then I could say, "Look at me! I'm dancing!"

The late Odell LaGrone shares a one-on-one moment about 15 years ago with his daughter Ginger when, in his mid-70s, he invited her to a daddy-daughter banquet at his church, First Baptist in Amarillo, Texas.
Submitted photo
How like our journey through this dance of life. Sometimes my heavenly Father has held me up securely and tightly in His strong arms. I've been through those times and in places where the only hope and comfort was in my Father's arms -- showered with love and mercy -- protected from the evil one. Other times I'm stronger, and I dance on His feet.

But, always, always, He has to lead. When I try to go it on my own, I mess up. I'm moving but it's not The Dance. Without His guidance, I cannot make it. Even when I feel strong and mature, I want to dance in His arms, moving and following His subtle lead.

As you go through your dance of life, remember that we cannot do it on our own. Without Him we are nothing (John 15:5). And, with Him all things are possible (Luke 1:37, Matthew 19:26). Stay on your Father's feet. Gaze into His loving face. Let Him lead you through the dance. He alone knows the way.

I want every day I have left to be days of dancing on my Father's feet, under His power and guidance, listening to His loving voice say, "Child, let me lead. 'I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life'" (John 14:6).

Ginger LaGrone Tucker is the author of several books, including "Dancing on Daddy's Feet and Other Stories of God's Love," and member of Paramount Baptist Church in Amarillo, Texas.
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