Peace by Piece
By Bev Arnold
This hurricane season, my family was waiting for the end-of-summer storm to make landfall. During the long wait, we found a renewed interest and passion for puzzles.
Puzzle assembly had its stages.
First, we separated the edge pieces from the other confusing pieces. The edge held it all together, providing a frame. Next, we separated the puzzle pieces by color and theme.
Piece by piece, we examined the details. Our minds began to memorize the shapes and colors, comparing individual pieces to the big picture on the puzzle box. Before we knew it, a beautiful matching picture emerged.
Isn’t this so typical of our lives?
In our transitions, moves, or stages, we often try to make sense of every little detail ― like puzzle pieces. Why this move? How will I live life in this place? Will my needs be met? Why did this happen to me? What will I do, now that my kids are grown? Do I have purpose? How does this all fit?!
As Christ followers, we acknowledge with our head that Jesus loves us and has a wonderful plan for our lives. But do we truly embrace His truth with our hearts? He has made us with a frame, on purpose. “My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth” (Psalm 139:15). I am made and seen by my Lord.
So we acknowledge we have a frame, but what about the pieces?
As a puzzle-completer, the practice of allowing the process to happen naturally, can be difficult. There have been times when I had to walk away from the puzzle that is my life without knowing how one piece fit into the whole picture. I let my mind rest. When I returned to considering the puzzle, the solution would sometimes be obvious. Often, this process took weeks or longer. But in the end, it was reassuring to see how the pieces fit together to reveal God's plan for my life.
Just as I run to the puzzle box to make sense of an individual piece, I can and should run to the Scriptures for answers to every piece of my life. “The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame” (Isaiah 58:11a).
God has our lives in His hands. He made our frame and gives us a framework to guide us daily. God is using every part of our life, piece by piece, to create this beautiful picture. Allow Him to complete the work in you. “Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you, will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Philippians 1:6).
Life is often a puzzle. But we can be at peace, piece by piece.
“He has made everything beautiful in its time” (Ecclesiastes 3:11a).
Bev is no stranger to moving. After growing up in the same house, she lived in 12 states and 3 foreign countries with her wonderful husband, Stan. After his retirement from the Army, they happily moved to the same Florida town as their adult kids and spouses and their seven grandchildren. Bev has a heart for the uprooted woman as she, too, continues to embrace her present and look to the future with a firm faith in Jesus.
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