• Dana L. Butler

Starting Off By Leaning In {Tuning Into His Nearness and Encountering Grace}

Beep beep beep beep.  Beep beep beep beep.  Beep beep beep beep.

Grab phone.  Check email.  Publish blog post for the day (which takes about 10 seconds because I wrote it the day – or evening – before.)  Jump in shower.  Mumble something to Stan about having a headache (I often wake up with migraines that go away at some point later in the morning. I’ve had this problem for years. Weird.)

Thus begin many of my mornings.  Well, some of them.  Fewer of them now, actually.  I am one of those moms who isn’t likely to get focused, sit-down time with the Lord till after my kiddo is down for his afternoon nap.  BUT, this is something about which the Lord’s been whispering reminders to my heart lately.

Whispering them louder than normal.

“Remember to begin your day by tuning in to Me.  Before you check your email or jump in the shower or even get out of bed, take 20 seconds (or a minute or two) and pull the priorities of your heart into order.  I’m here to meet you as you do.  Remember to acknowledge Me as your Source of strength and wisdom and peace and joy and life for this day.”

So, I’ve been trying (and sometimes failing, but trying nonetheless) as He’s been drawing me to obey Him in this over the last few weeks, and it’s been incredible how much more “in-tune” I am with His nearness and His voice and His empowering grace throughout my days.

It makes all the difference in the world when Isaac and I are both sleep-deprived and he’s high-maintenance and cranky and Stan’s out of town for 2 weeks (Oh wait, that would be right now!), and when I would otherwise begin to feel this gradually growing desire to yell at my son or pull my hair out or something along those lines.

 In these moments, I am learning to stay “tuned in” to His voice, His nearness, His whispers of “Peace, be still” to my heart.  He draws me into that place of peace and shelter in His heart throughout my days as I remember to start off by intentionally leaning into Him.  

This is definitely NOT to say that I always pull this off perfectly, or even well.  Some days feel like a total wash.  But He’s still faithful (Isn’t that amazing?!).  And I’m His work in progress.

Just thought I’d share with you today this prayer that I pray (some version of) every morning.  Well, as often as I remember.


I turn my heart toward You this morning.  I tune into Your nearness to me.

Your whispers to my heart.

Thank You that You’re waiting to encounter me today, in every moment

and every circumstance that this day brings. 

Help me to be aware.  Give me open eyes to see You all around me,

open ears to discern Your invitations to me, and a loud “YES”

of surrender in my heart as I respond to them. 

I confess my dependence on You today.  

I confess my need for Your grace, Your strength, Your empowerment for every moment.

I can do all things through You.  I believe it.  I receive Your grace for today.

You are more than enough for me.

Praise God – we have a Father who LOVES to give good gifts to His children and who LOVES to reveal His heart to us.  As we ask, He will answer.  As we confess our incompleteness and our inadequacy, as we intentionally lean into Him in our hearts, He will demonstrate His perfect completeness in us.   This is where we cross the line from operating out of our own strength, to experiencing His strength operating in and through us.

I need Him like this so badly.  Every day.  Every hour.  Don’t you?

Know someone who'd appreciate this?

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