How to Find the True You

Book by Michelle DeRusha, True You: Letting Go of Your False Self to Uncover the Person God Created

"When I was big, did I ask my name?" It takes a couple tries, but I realize my 4-year-old is asking if he asked us What is my name? when he started speaking.

I chuckle at the thought and tell him no, I don't recall him ever asking that.

"But how did I know my name?" I now get what he's wondering.

So I tell him, "We called you by your name over and over. We said it to you so much that you just knew it."

That seems to appease him.

Then I feel God impressing on my heart: That's how you know who you are. I've been telling you since the day you were born. I've been saying your name. You are loved, you are chosen, you are created by Me with purpose. Do you hear Me calling you by name?

Too often I'm too distracted to hear it. Even in the "stillness" or in the apparent "quiet," I'm too often scrolling or filling my time with something that keeps my soul from really being still or quiet. Yet, it's in the stillness we know who God is, and I believe in the stillness is also where we hear God telling us who we are.

That's also the message my friend Michelle DeRusha shares in her new book True You: Letting Go of Your False Self to Uncover the Person God Created (affiliate link; see full note below). She emphasizes the importance of slowing down to really listen to who God says we are. Her message of getting quiet to let the soul feel its worth in the presence of its Creator: it's necessary.

As Michelle writes, "If you want to catch a glimpse of the soul's 'precious wildness,' you must get quiet."

My fear tells me that in the quiet I will be made a fraud, undeserving, unworthy, incapable. But the truth is in the quiet I find my identity, purpose, and belonging in Jesus who is undoubtedly true, deserving, worthy, capable. That sounds like a great foundation for my life.

"Our mind needs time and space to catch up with what our soul already knows," writes Michelle.

How do we do this? How do we get quiet and listen?

Michelle shares about her practice in "directed rest" to be quiet to listen, and the idea of "fukinaoshi of the soul" to let go of the false self. You can learn more about that and read Michelle's story in True You.

Here are some things that are helping me get quiet and hear God tell me who I am in this season...

Start a ritual.

Quiet isn't a one-time thing, so I've worked on building it into my daily and weekly routines in various ways. Lately, I wake up in the morning for some light therapy time and that's my quiet right at the start of the day. I also do quiet stretching at the end of the day. Then I shut down the technology for Sabbath and take a bath each week. These aren't live-changing practices, but get me back into the habit of being okay with quiet. Plus, they're doable and that's where I needed to start is with my routine rhythms.

Turn off screens.

Quiet and stillness aren't actually very quiet or still for the soul if screens are still on. So whenever or wherever I have my quiet, I make sure my phone is not a part of it. (You can always make an exception if you find value in a meditation app or a yoga video.)

Make a collage.

When I need something to do in the quiet, I make a collage card. It's one way to fill the silence that's still tuned in to my soul and what God might be trying to speak to me or about me. I am often surprised at the end result of the collage to see what's on my heart and mind that I might have otherwise missed.

Take a bath.

A bath is one of the few places I am truly still and quiet and completely okay with it. I add epsom salts and eucalyptus bubbles, and make sure the water is hot enough for me to linger a while. In the past I've leaned over the edge to look at a magazine or scroll on my phone, but lately I opt to just sit in the warm quiet. I've even added a string of soft lights over the mirror for a calmer atmosphere, and just let my mind wander. It's crazy what kinds of things can get worked out or what seeds are planted in that simple practice of just sitting (or laying) in the stillness.

Stretch.

This is a great end and/or start to the day. I used to make stretching happen during a show I was watching, which was a good use of the time. But lately I try to do my evening stretching before I go to bed without watching something. This helps create more of a meditative practice.

Read.

While reading doesn't leave the mind quiet, thoughtfully choosing reading material can still be a great way to hear God speak truth over you. Especially if it's from God's Word or from an author who points to God's Word.

Write what God might be saying.

If you're feeling doubtful or anxious or struggling with the quiet, pull out a pen and journal to write what you imagine God might be telling you. If He were writing you a letter, what might He tell you about who you are, how He created you, and where you belong?


The point is, God is saying your name. He is telling you your identity, your purpose, the place you belong. Be still and know that He is God and that you are His. He created you, He cares about you, and He is continuing to help you grow.

Are you listening?

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*Note: Affiliate links used in this post. Purchases through these links could earn me a small commission with no extra cost to the purchaser. Thank you!