• Dana L. Butler

Day 23: How ’bout You Be Still?

Hola, my beloved friends!

Today finds me on a plane, flying to South Carolina for Allume! I’ve been looking forward to this for over a year, and am so thankful for my always-supportive hubby who’s parenting solo for a few days while I’m gone. I covet your prayers for Stan and for my kiddos while I’m away, and that Jesus would divinely orchestrate conversations and details for me at the conference.

While I travel today, I’m bringing you words I wrote a few days ago (and… ahem… a total photo dump), and this might be one of my favorite posts I’ve written in quite a long time.

It’s 4:15 in the afternoon.

The kids and I load up Isaac’s roller skates, our picnic blanket, sandwiches, chips, and bananas. We head out to Liberty Memorial, quite possibly our family’s numero uno fave spot to hang in the entirety of Kansas City.

The trees are every shade of yellow, orange, and red imaginable, and I struggle to stop photographing their brightness. The ground around several of them is already carpeted with beauty, and the expansive lawn stretches out before us, just begging to be frolicked on.

Isaac plays his 4 year old version of hide-n-seek behind the trees — yells, Mom, come find me!” as he races from the backside of one tree to the backside of the next, pretending I can’t see exactly where he’s going.

Maia and I run after him, sneak around trees and “find” him. Tickles and laughter explode, and passersby grin at our wild mirth.

We make our way up toward the monument itself, and it seems like every conversation we pass is about one subject: THE ROYALS. 

Twelve plus years of my adult life I’ve lived in this city, and we have never come close to a World Series. Not remotely. And I marvel a little at how fun it is that in our last few months here in KC, our baseball team is kicking some serious tale.

I set Maia free from her stroller and she toddles around, climbing up stairs, exploring the monument, which I imagine must look absolutely, otherworldly gargantuan to my 34-inch-tall little bean.

And I can’t quite make out what he’s saying, but I hear Isaac quietly encouraging Maia as she makes her way up a set of stairs to where he’s standing. “…..because you’re my baby sister.” Funny how easy it is to utterly melt my mama heart.

Stan gets off work and drives to meet us after an hour and fifteen minutes or so. We spread a blanket out on the grass, and when Isaac sees Stan coming he does a happy dance right there in the midst of our picnic, then takes off running across the grass to be swept up in his daddy’s embrace.

Stan’s smile is visible from afar, approaching the 3 people who will always be more ecstatic to see him than anyone else in the world.

We chow on turkey and cheese sandwiches, hear about each others’ days, and relish the sunset and the perfect temperatures.

I help Isaac pad up and practice skating with his new birthday roller skates, and then we pack up and head back home for baths and bed. With Maia snoozing soundly, Stan sits down in the rocker in Isaac’s room to read him a few Bible stories.

For a minute, my brain is buzzing with all the things I could be getting done during the 5 or 6 minutes they’ll spend reading. I very nearly jump up and run downstairs to be productive, but — and this has really never happened to me before in this way, at this time of day — Jesus stops me in my would-be tracks.

Dana? How ’bout you be still a few minutes?

The prompting is so strong that time almost feels suspended and His presence is suddenly palpable.

Holy. The moment is holy.

So I sit there, on the carpet, back against the wall of my son’s room, and I listen.

And it takes a minute or so for it to dawn on me exactly what I’m hearing from the rocking chair where my boy sits on his daddy’s lap:

Jesus told Martha, “Mary has chosen what is better, and it won’t be taken from her.”

The words land heavy on my heart — the kind of heavy that comes when I know in my gut that God is drawing my attention to something. That He’s connecting truths and experiences in my soul.

Remember, Dana. Mary. The heart of Mary.

Yes, Lord. Yes.

The heart of the one who chose to sit at her Master’s feet when protocol would have dictated that she run crazy and do, do, do. Mary was countercultural, even offensive, in her determination to be near Him. To sit at His feet and hear His heart.

While Stan and Isaac keep reading, a hush falls over my own heart. I close my eyes on Isaac’s bedroom floor, and I whisper to Him my yes.

Yes, Jesus. Keep my heart. Slow me down — just keep drawing me to your feet — and I’ll consider all else a loss for the sake of knowing You.


This post is part of my 31 Days series, Rooted: 31 Days of Authenticity (from my life in limbo). You can find the entire series here.

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