Devotionals, Testimonies

Dancing Shoes

Diane Virginia, Faith Beyond Fear,, Alynda Long, Dancing Shoes, Childlike faith, testimony, devotional

I have become a collector of hearts, but I do not collect just any hearts. They are gifts from my daughter, Danielle. Each is like a time capsule, capturing a memory from her youth.

One is a foil heart. She added two colors of ink to make it extra pretty.

Yet another is a heart-shaped rock she found in the garden. I still remember her squeal of delight with this discovery. She skipped to me, carrying her little rock. We washed it in the hose. She kissed me on the cheek and told me her little treasure was now mine. Periodically she checked with me to make sure I cradled the heart to her satisfaction.

One heart is of twisted wire, fashioned as a pendant for me to wear.

Another is of clay. Because she was older, the detail is more refined and thinner, with letters “I” and “U” flanking this heart.

I look at these hearts often, as I remember my daughter will forever be in my heart as I am in hers.

*          *          *

What do Danielle’s hearts have to do with dancing shoes? Let me tell you a story that will give you the answer.

Pretend you are a little girl, age four-and-a-half. Yes, “and-a-half” is important when you’re that age. At this time, you are learning to love Jesus. You love to run, bounce on couches, and play bowling with Daddy where you and your brother get to be the pins and the bowling ball is a giant beach ball. Yes, you’re an active girl. Your hair is golden, and your locks are shoulder length.

You are taking dancing classes. You learn to pirouette, point your toes, jump, and twirl. The teacher who you are learning from loves Jesus. Then it happens…

You are in church with Daddy and Mommy and Lil’ Bro. A holy hush comes upon the Sunday congregation. You listen in. There’s a stirring, as spontaneous worship begins. A gentleman starts singing in the balcony. He is joined by a lady in the choir. Another lady in the nave begins to sing. The congregation joins in. Soon, the worship becomes exuberant! You tug at Momma’s hem.

“Momma, can I dance?”

“What, sweetheart?”

“Jesus is here. Can I dance?”


With permission granted, you run the aisle of the church, twirling in exuberant worship. Your dance is the perfect picture of what Jesus says about the innocent trust of a child; “Let the children come to me; do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God.” (Mark 10:14b ESV)

Diane Cunio, Faith Beyond Fear,, Alynda Long, Dancing Shoes, Childlike faith, testimony, devotional

Your dance is the perfect picture of what Jesus says about the innocent trust of a child. - Diane Cunio Click To Tweet

Yes, to your momma’s delight, you worship as only a child can fully do. You are carefree, authentic, trusting, and innocent. The joy you display comes from within your heart. You make Momma and Daddy proud that day, and we smile really big. All day.

The next morning, you point to the heart-cross pendant your momma has worn all your life.  You tell me, “I wanna wear a cross with a heart just like you, Mommy.”

“Sweetheart,” I say, “when you know what it means to be saved, Momma promises you, I’ll get you a heart-cross pendant.”

You pout.

“It’s just that… Well, sweetie you’re only four.”


“Yes. Your birthday is very soon. We’ll celebrate it.”

“I wanna wear a heart. With a cross.”

You cross your arms.

“When you understand…”

“But Mommy, I do understand.”

“How about you tell Mommy what you believe about Jesus.”

“He died on the cross, and He is alive.”


“And He loves me this much!” You spread your hands as wide as you can. “And when I put my dancing shoes on, I can feel Him right heeeeeer…..” You point to your heart and twirl.

“I will get you a heart with a cross.” I say, “because you do understand.”

*          *          *

I’d love to say I got that first heart-cross pendant for my daughter but I did not. You see, Danielle’s dance teacher came to me that next Sunday and told me how much my four-and-a-half-year-old was really into worship. Her teacher was impressed not by the perfection of my child’s moves, but by the spirit in which she performed them. She asked permission to give her a gift. I agreed. She handed Danielle a tiny box.

Inside, was a pendant—a cross within a sparkly heart.

Danielle jumped for joy! But I cried, knowing the LORD Himself had confirmed to me she really did know what it meant to be saved.

The Bible says, “For with the heart man believeth.” (Romans 10:10a KJV) May I add, sometimes the inner heart puts on dancing shoes. And sometimes the one who believes is a little girl, of four-and-a-half, who knows without reservation that John 3:16 is real.


Copyright 2016: All Rights Reserved: VineWords Stories and Devotions Inspired by the Vine: Author Diane Virginia Cunio; Pen Name, Diane Virginia; Dancing Shoes


Dancing Shoes is a fictional story, 99 ½ percent true, about my daughter, Danielle.

Diane Virginia, Expected Visitor, Devotionals, Faith Beyond Fear

Diane Virginia, Contributing Writer

Diane Virginia (Cunio) is the author of The Kiss of Peace: An Intimate Exploration into Song of Solomon and Behind the Veil: Becoming the Bride of Song of Solomon (both books awaiting publication). She is passionate about sharing Beloved Jesus’ love for you, His Bride, as you are allegorically portrayed in Song of Solomon.

Diane has written for Christian Broadcast Network, Pentecostal Publishing House, The Secret Place, and other ministries. Hobbies include reading, homesteading, horseback riding, ponding, and making Scripture-inspired jewelry.

To schedule Diane as a speaker, please contact her via her website: Stories and Devotions Inspired by the Vine. You may find her on Facebook or contact her via email at

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16 thoughts on “Dancing Shoes”

  1. Thank you, Chip Mattis. I thought so too. Her worship was moving! The only fictional part was the last dialogue line. I added, “when I put my dancing shoes on.” She was twirling, though, to demonstrate to Mommy she really knew Jesus was in her heart. I cherish the memory…. Danielle is a sweet young lady, age thirty and-a-half now, and for Christmas I got her a grown-up looking heart-cross pendant, and a replacement pendant for her childhood pendant that here dance teacher gave her. Somewhere along the way, we lost the original and we were heartbroken about that. As I’m sure you can imagine well, Danielle and I both cried when I gave her the heart-cross pendants and the story Dancing Shoes.

  2. This is so beautiful. Jesus please give me a heart of love to dance for you. Matthew 18:2,” Unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”

    1. Thank you, Yvonne. Danielle was so precious with her worship I will treasure it forever. And how the Lord chose to confirm that she really did know what it means to be saved I also will treasure forever. It was quite a moment.

  3. Dear Diane, this brought tears to my eyes, for my husband collects heart rocks for me much like your precious daughter collects heart objects for you. Each one a memory of love tucked away. And your story of the worship dance reminded me of my 2 daughters when they were little floating around the family room to Wee Sing Praise Songs. Not quite as momentous as your daughter at church, but still out of joy for Jesus. Just filled with joy. Thank you for sharing this glorious memory and inviting us to join in!

    1. Oh, Melissa! What a delight it must be to have a husband and daughter’s with those qualities. I am do glad the Lord orchestrated this family for you. Thanks also for sharing the devotion blessed you. That is very encouraging, sister.

  4. Beautiful! I was reading a book recently where the author challenged us to remember that children have the same Holy Spirit dwelling within them as we do. Just because they’re doesn’t mean the Spirit diminishes His power in them!

    1. I totally agree, sister. Look at John to Jesus. What a testimony that is about a child’s heart that he worshipped before he was even born. Childlike faith and I filling g of the Holy Spirit is an amazing gift.

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