Finding Where We Don’t Belong

January 17, 2020 by  
Filed under Daily Devotions, Family

By Janet Morris Grimes –

Have you ever played the game of Sudoku?

It’s a logic puzzle that asks you to place the numbers 1 – 9 in each column and box without repeating any number.  It’s challenging, intriguing and rewarding all at the same time.

The funny thing is that in order to find out where the numbers belong, you must first determine where they don’t.  Then, and only then, do you find the correct answers.

Sometimes I think God works with us like that as well.  We ask Him for guidance, but then it seems like we get a bunch of “no – that’s not it” answers.  But, my guess is that God understands that we are just human enough that it takes something like closing a few doors to nudge us out of our comfort zone; to force us to take a different step; to bring us out into the open, where the only choice we have is to depend on Him, and Him alone.

I can’t help but think that God is playing this game of Sudoku with us as He is creating our future. I jokingly told my boss the other day that I had given him a “two year notice,” because we believed we were getting transferred to another state (for my husband’s job with Ford) for the past two years.  For the first year, we thought we were headed to Louisville.  Then there were a few months of Chicago rumors, which even led us to take a trip up there to search for housing.  Then there was Kansas City, and now Dearborn, Michigan.

All of these locations have one thing in common.  They are far away from everyone and every thing we have known and loved for our entire lives.

So what does this mean for my family?

It means that as He is gently showing us where we don’t belong, He is also preparing us for whatever comes next.  And little by little, step by step, as one door after another is closing, God is slowly leading us out into the open, where we have no choice but to depend on Him, and Him alone.

And I’m okay with that.

I suspect that it will be challenging, intriguing and rewarding all at the same time.

PRAYER: Lord, we want nothing apart from Your plan for our lives.  Please reveal that to us clearly, and put obstacles in our path if that path is not from You.  Show us where we belong, even if it means You must first show us where we do not.  We lay our future in your hands. Please give us the strength, and trust, to leave it there.

BIBLE VERSE: “Show me your ways, O LORD, teach me your paths” (Psalms 25:4 NIV).

About Janet Morris Grimes

Janet is the author of The Parent's Guide to Uncluttering Your Home, released in April of 2011 through Atlantic Publishing. She launched Abbandoned Ministries in 2010, which leads others through her writing and speaking to seek God, as Abba, during times of abandonment. She currently writes monthly for Christian Woman Today, the grief website Open to Hope, and Mamapedia. For additional information on Janet, visit her website at or
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2 Responses to “Finding Where We Don’t Belong”
  1. Hally Franz says:

    This is so true Janet, and what a wonderful analogy! It reminds me a bit of the lyrics “sometimes I thank God for unsnswered prayers,” but then, “no” answers and closed doors are answers, aren’t they. Thanks, Janet!

  2. Thanks so much for reading, Hally. I continue to be amazed that just when I begin to wonder if God is working, I realize He is up to much more than I could even imagine.

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