My grandson Landon has developed a fascination with puzzles lately—well, mostly carrying around the pieces and depositing them where he likes. I thought I would help cultivate this interest and skill by purchasing him a new puzzle, so I looked on Amazon and ordered him one. It was a chunky wooden block puzzle for toddlers that allows a child to create 6 different puzzles by the way he positions the blocks. The completed puzzles each featured a brightly colored vehicle like a fire truck or bus. When I presented Landon with the new toy, he picked up all 9 blocks, carried them over to the magazine rack, and dumped them inside. I sat him down on the floor and started showing him how to make a picture from the pieces. He laughed, gathered up the blocks again, and tossed them in the air. Okay, I thought to myself, he’s not ready for this yet.
The truth is, we all encounter puzzles in our lives. Sometimes, like my grandson, we just can’t seem to make all the pieces fit together, to get a clear picture of God’s design for our lives. Right now, all 4 of my children are dealing with different puzzles in their lives, trying to figure out how everything fits together. I’ve been praying for them, and here’s what the Lord has shown me.
God sees the bigger picture
When I look at just one piece of the block puzzle I got for Landon, it doesn’t make sense. The colors and patterns don’t seem right on their own, but when I put them all together, I can see the grand design. It’s that way with our lives. God sees the bigger picture. He possesses the best plan, the best design, for our lives. We have to choose to trust Him when we don’t see how things fit together.
The Lord tells us, ““For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts’” (Isaiah 55:9, NASB). Our all-wise, all-loving Father has everything under control.
I looked at the packaging for the puzzle I got Landon and realized the puzzle was made for 4-year-olds. Landon is two. He doesn’t have the capacity to understand the puzzle design at this point. It’s the same for us. Our finite minds cannot comprehend the limitless wisdom, infinite grace, and all-surpassing love of our Father in heaven. We have to believe He sees the bigger picture and is working out all things for our good and His glory (Romans 8:28-29).
He tells us in His Word, “Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely” (1 Corinthians 13:12, NLT). Mirrors in Biblical times were made of metal, so reflections in them were blurred and unclear (kind of like looking at your face in a polished metal pot, where the reflection is distorted and fuzzy). In other words, life can be uncertain, confusing, and cloudy this side of heaven, but we are promised we will understand everything once we see the Lord face to face. Our job now is to trust the Lord with the big picture of our lives.
We can proclaim, “When I am afraid, I will put my trust in You” (Psalm 56:3, NLT). We can say in our hearts, “When anxiety is great within me, I am going to rely on Your consolations Lord to bring me joy” (based on Psalm 94:19, NIV). That word trust means to hide for refuge, to trust, be confident, or sure. Other words for consolation are comfort, compassion, empathy, help, encouragement, reassurance, and relief. In other words, we can give the puzzles in our lives to the Lord and expect Him to take care of them in His caring way. He knows how all the parts fit together for the greater good.
God puts the puzzle together
Since I am older and wiser than my grandson at this point, I am going to continue working with him to show him how the block puzzle fits together. I am going to put it together with him.
On a much higher lever, the Lord knows how everything fits together in our lives, and He is the One who makes it all align. “The Lord says, ‘I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you’” (Psalm 32:8, NLT).
We are wise when we allow Him to lead us in joining the pieces, in putting the puzzle together. We experience a deep intimacy and connection with Him when we do, a prize far greater than even the completed puzzle. Again, trust serves as the key to unlocking this gift. Proverbs 3:5-6, NLT, says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek His will in all you do, and He will show you which path to take.” The best part is you will be walking that path with Him.
Through it all, we can rely on what He tells us: “‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future’” (Jeremiah 29:11, NIV).
The puzzle of your life is beautiful and unique
The puzzling circumstances in each of our lives have come from the hand of One who loves us beyond measure. They are meant to refine and shape us to take on the image of Jesus for the world to see (2 Corinthians 3:18).
“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them,” (Ephesians 2:10, NASB). That word workmanship means a fabric, as woven together like a tapestry; a masterpiece.
Yes, all the pieces of our lives come together in the Master Craftsman’s hands to create a beautiful work of art. When others gaze upon our lives, may they ultimately see the overwhelming beauty of the Lord Himself (Psalm 27:4).
I’m hoping my grandson will soon get to experience the thrill of seeing his puzzle come together and realizing an amazing picture lies within it. May the Lord do the same for all of us as we entrust our puzzles to Him.
Question: How has the Lord shown up in the puzzles of your life? Comment at the link below.
Isaiah 55:9; Romans 8:28-29; 1 Corinthians 13:12; Psalm 56:3; 94:19; 32:8; Proverbs 3:5-6; Jeremiah 29:11; 2 Corinthians 3:18; Ephesians 2:10; Psalm 27:4