So, we are having a “Spring Fling” dance party in Fellowship Hall at the end of April. More than one long-time member has observed, “We have never before held a dance at Otterbein.”

Methodists, along with many other denominations, have a long history of setting limits against many kinds of “pleasure” that are common in our culture. Certain activities that are primarily for the purpose of bringing pleasure – rhythmic music, laughter, dance – were one time defined as “not sacred” or “not appropriate for a church building.” This separation of the spiritual and physical may be part of a long tradition, but is not necessarily Biblical. King David danced with abandon to celebrate a victory, the Song of Songs graphically celebrates passionate love-making, Jesus partied at the wedding in Cana and brought in the best wine, and approved when the woman washed and perfumed his feet.

I suggest that if God did not condone our capacity for pleasure and sensuality, she would not have invented springtime in Pennsylvania. Lambs gambol in the meadows, squirrels madly build their sloppy, twiggy nests, the bald eagles of nearby Hanover, PA enthrall us (those of us addicted to the webcam) as they dutifully tended their eggs and then amaze us when the wet eaglets push through to see the world. Lime green shoots push through the dirt, warm breezes tease our skin, persistent chirping of birds whisper in our ears, and we taste earthy bitter dandelion greens. Our senses are assaulted with the bursting, blossoming, birthing, beauty of spring, a climax of riotous color after a brown, cold winter.

So mark your calendar and join the Spring Fling. Celebrate the season and be thankful to the Creator with your body and soul and mind and strength! As she joins us, God waltzes and smiles.