By Ginger Ciminello

Dear Ginger,

How do I know what God wants me to do? I feel like I can’t tell the difference between His voice and my voice… and I really want to.

-B

Dear B,

First, I want you to know that God speaks to all of us differently and calls us differently! I think it is so encouraging to look through the Bible and remember how uniquely God speaks and calls to each of us. Moses saw God face-to-face; Paul got a light from heaven; Ezekiel watched dry bones; Gideon was visited by an angel; Elijah witness the fire, felt the quake, and then found God in the whisper; and still others were met by talking donkeys and storms that held them at bay. The important point is that you are seeking. When you desire to be in God’s will, He honors that. When the Israelites finally sought God, “He was found by them.” (2 Chronicles 15:15)

That being said, have you ever heard of the game Sardines? I used to play it all the time as a kid. It’s almost a reverse of traditional “Hide and Seek.” In Sardines the “it” person goes to hide and everyone else counts. Then everyone heads out looking for the person. If I find the sardine, I have to try to hide with that person in their hiding place. This continues until there is only one man left standing.

I’m sure you’re wondering what this has to do with anything.

For a long time—especially in high school and college–I thought of my relationship with God as if it was a game of Sardines. I wanted to know God’s will for my life so desperately, but I felt that no matter how hard I asked or looked, I just couldn’t determine what God wanted for me. I would look at all of my friends confidently making decisions and couldn’t help but think that they had all found the answer. That was it—the entire world was hiding with God in a huge game of Sardines, and I was the last one standing as they all told each other, “Shhhh!”

“Everyone else can find you, so why can’t I?” I would lose heart and I resign myself to being last. That’s crazy, right?

Confession: I feel like that, every once in a while, even to this day. I’ve read and memorized Jeremiah 29:13 until it’s practically a daily saying: “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”

Mark Batterson writes, “God wants you to get where God wants you to go, more than you want to get where God wants you to go.” We can use up a lot of energy worrying that we aren’t hearing from God, or we take joy and peace from knowing God isn’t hiding. He is waiting for us to seek Him.

I don’t know about you, but that truth about God let’s me take a deep and contented sigh.

“My heart says of you, ‘Seek his face.’ Your face, LORD, I will seek.” (Psalm 27:8)

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