3 Reasons to Add Dance to Your Worship

“Worship” is a broad term. But all too often, the worship team is perceived as a band. Praising Jesus with our voices is a powerful way to glorify and connect with God—but a worship team is so much more than that. The body of Christ is diverse, and so are the ways people praise.
Not everyone can sing or play an instrument. But the value of worship isn’t based on our abilities. When it comes to worship, the person who has to hide their voice in the crowd can offer God just as much as the person who hits all the right notes on the mic. What if we treated other forms of worship the way we treat vocal praise? The band is a key component of the worship team, and it’s highly specialized. Many churches have other groups within their worship team that enhance the worship experience of the congregation, much like the band.
As the worship pastor or worship leader, you probably lead the church in vocal praise because of your musical gifting. But if you aren’t gifted in other forms of worship, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t add other components.
Our “Bring More Than a Song” series will explore both alternative forms of worship and ways you can make them a part of your service. Today, here are three reasons you should consider adding dance, and ways you can make it happen:

1. It’s not for everyone, but it is for some

I’m clumsy. I’m uncoordinated. I’m not a fan of dancing—but that’s because I can’t do it! I’m not a particularly great singer either, but at least I can hide my voice in a crowd. Choreographed dancing is an uncoordinated person’s nightmare. But in spite of my lack of desire to dance, I still have an appreciation for those who enjoy it. I love seeing someone so inspired by their God that they can only express it through movement. Their worship can’t be contained—and sometimes, it comes out more naturally through dance than through their voice.

2. Band practice for the band,        practice for the        team

Growing up, a couple from our church established a dance studio called Dancing for Joy, which met at the church. Over the years, their class sizes grew until eventually the church wasn’t big enough to hold them. Occasionally, Dancing for Joy coordinates with the worship team to prepare dance routines based on the songs the band has prepared, and then performs on Sundays while the band leads the congregation. It’s far from a distraction. Seeing other people dancing—and seeing that dance lifted up by the church—frees people who feel awkward or uncomfortable about dancing to worship their Lord in the way they’ve always wanted to. People can choose to dance or not dance, just like they can choose to sing or not sing.
Your band is led by someone who knows how to lead a band. Chances are, someone in your church knows a thing or two about dance. For all you know, someone is waiting right now for God to show them how to use their passion for movement to point others to him. You don’t have to try to become someone you’re not. Your church is full of other people. Find the ones who show their love for Jesus just as passionately as you do, in ways you don’t.

3. A visual expression of worship

Maybe you already have people at your church who dance during worship. Instead of ignoring it and perpetuating the air of awkwardness that surrounds dancing in front of others, maybe it’s time to lift up dance in your church. Like singing, dancing can be a powerful emotional experience—and it’s all over the Bible (Psalm 149:3, Ecclesiastes 3:4, Psalm 150:4, etc.). We don’t need to force people to dance—just like we don’t force people to sing if they don’t want to—but we shouldn’t stifle an expression of worship just because it’s not our preference.
Bringing more than a song is about discovering the ways other people worship, and learning to see how it could become a part of your church. There are so many things that make you a completely unique creation, uniquely pleasing to God. What are some of the ways you feel closest to him? How does worship manifest itself in your church? Tell us in the comments, and we might talk about it.

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Written by
Ryan Nelson

Ryan Nelson is a writer for OverviewBible, where he uses Logos to explore the characters, groups, places, and books of the Bible. He has served in a variety of volunteer ministry positions, primarily through Young Life.

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Written by Ryan Nelson