I bought a 5 pack of 500 piece puzzles before Christmas, thinking it would be a fun thing to do as a family while we were all home together. Doing a puzzle isn’t easy, but it is easy to remember the spiritual analogies about puzzles that I’ve heard in my lifetime.
“We can’t see the big picture, but God can.”
“This is just a piece of the puzzle that God is making out of your life. The end result will be beautiful.”
I don’t mean to make light of those. They’re true statements. We can’t see how one small piece of our story fits in with God’s plan for us. We can’t see how one hard day or one good day or one boring day leads ultimately to his purpose. Someday, we will.
We started this balloon puzzle and I did the outside pieces but quickly became overwhelmed, discouraged, and bored. I let my husband plug along, watching in amusement as he meticulously studied the box and the picture, analyzing where in the grand scheme of things each piece went. His style is so unlike my own.
It took about 3 or 4 days before we knew we were nearing the end. That’s when the kids got interested. With about 20 pieces to go, the boys came over, grabbed a handful, and hastily tried to find their places. They both wanted to put in that epic last piece, and thus, get all the glory. “I finished the puzzle!”
The verdict is still out as to whether the piece never made it into the box or if it’s hiding somewhere in our house. Either way, it’s a frustrating way to end.
Of course, there will be no missing pieces in the end. (Going back to that spiritual analogy…) Every tear will make sense and every tear will be wiped away. The suffering will have served its purpose and the suffering will be no more. The good things that have happened will have been a dim glimpse of the perfection to come. I long for all of that with an anticipatory hope. I trust that it is so. I have faith that every piece will fit, every “i” will be dotted and every “t” will be crossed.