I had kings on my mind last week already. Or, should I say, I had a particular king on my mind – King David.
We had a large family event – a wedding – that included music and dancing. I was so happy for the wedding couple that I literally danced my joy for most of the night.
And that made me think of King David.
Years ago, I heard a homily by a priest who spoke about David’s absolute joy when the Ark of the Covenant was brought to the City of David. David was so ecstatic that he literally “danced his joy” as he led the procession with the Ark into the city. The point was that we should be so delighted at God’s presence that we’d be able to “dance our joy” as David did.
I thought about God’s presence among the wedding couple as they were wed, and his presence on the altar during Mass and within the hearts of the guests attending. I thought about the new life these two young people had begun together and their witness to Christian marriage.
I danced my joy, and that reminded me of King David dancing before the Ark of the Covenant.
On November 20, we honor the King – Christ the King. This feast day marks the end of the Liturgical Year and gives praise and worship to our Lord as the Kings of Kings. Pope Pius XI instituted this feast in 1925 as a way to counter the ill effects of secularism. He wanted to bring Christ back to the center when so many were living their lives as though God didn’t exist.
The feast of Christ the King proclaims his royalty over all of creation.
This same King – more powerful and great than any that ever was or ever will be – dwells in his Real Presence in the tabernacles of our churches. It’s the Ark of the Covenant in multitude. For as excited and joyful as David was leading the procession, we should even more so.
To the People of God in the Old Testament, the Ark contained the presence of God, the tablets on which he’s written the Ten Commandments and the symbol of his covenant with them. Today we have in our tabernacles Christ himself, the essence of the New Covenant. We not only can visit him there, but also we can receive him within ourselves, Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity during Holy Mass.
We have much to celebrate, particularly on the Feast of Christ the King, but also on a daily basis. Perhaps we won’t literally dance in the church aisles, but our hearts could and should dance within us. Like King David, we should be absolutely exuberant and unafraid to let it show.
Christ the King, the all-powerful, all-knowing, and all-loving Lord of Lords, the Supreme Ruler, allows us to experience his Presence in our tabernacles, in Adoration and in the Eucharist. It’s a procession, so to speak, that far exceeds any King David could have imagined.
Isn’t that worth dancing our joy?