I love the way You help me when I call
I love Your truth, I love the power of Your name
But You know I love Your presence most of all
My soul takes refuge in the shadow of Your wings
And close to You is where I want to be
You are my strength, You are my God, You are my King
And all I want is what You want for me
—"I Love Your Grace" by Rick Founds
This little praise tune from my days working in college ministry has played in my mind since awaking this morning. Sometimes early mornings are the absolute best for me to be drawn to experience and enjoy God's presence. The stillness is full of His love and promise, and even the fact that I'm up is proof of His grace. It is our time, His and mine, before the rest of the world has a chance to interrupt.
I've enjoyed this time all too rarely in recent years, but that seems to be changing. I'm grateful for that. Belief is one thing, but communing with His presence is what I truly need in my life. There are so many broken ways I've used to prove that I am loved, while deep down believing that I am not. But in His presence, I can abide in His love, becoming rooted and grounded in it so that the waves of the world do not toss and turn me as they do when I am double-minded.
What is most amazing, most powerful to me in these morning hours is not my desire for Him, which can clearly be all too fickle. I am instead awed by His desire for me, that He can be who He is and still love me, not in the passive, academic sense so many of us have come to accept, but with a passionate, pursuing love. He woke me up to be with Him, opened my eyes to see the beauty of this day He's made and enjoy it with Him. He chose me and He still chooses me.
Behold, the eye of the LORD is on those who fear Him,
on those who hope in His steadfast love,
that He may deliver their soul from death
and keep them alive in famine.
Our soul waits for the Lord;
He is our help and our shield.
For our heart is glad in Him,
because we trust in His holy name.
Let Your steadfast love, O LORD, be upon us,
even as we hope in You.