Do you like putting puzzles together? When I was growing up my Daddy always seemed to have a large jigsaw puzzle going on the dining room table. There would be times when the whole family would be gathered around the table working on it together. Other times, the room would be empty and we’d just pass through from time to time putting a piece in place until eventually we’d complete the puzzle.
Daddy would keep the box top propped up so we could see what the completed puzzle was supposed to look like. It was overwhelming at times to look at the pile of puzzle pieces and think we were going to have to connect them to create a picture even close to the box top. Some of the pieces looked like they didn’t belong at all, but inevitably they would bring everything into focus once they found their home.
Life is like a puzzle. We get one or two pieces at a time from God and we’re to put them in place before He gives us another. Peter experienced the concept of one piece at a time in Acts 12:1-19. He was in prison awaiting his execution. Herod had already executed James, the brother of John, so the church knew Peter’s fate. They contended in prayer for his safe release. In the night, as they were praying, an angel of the Lord visited Peter in prison and gave him detailed instructions one after another [Acts 12:7-10]. He didn’t give Peter the full explanation, ask him what he thought, and then begin to proceed. The angel told Peter to “Hurry! Get up!” and his chains fell away. Then he gave Peter the next instruction, “Put your shoes on, and get ready to go!” Peter gained new instructions as he completed the previous ones.
For most of us, our instructions from the Lord don’t come as quickly one right after another; yet He knows what we need even before we ask it [Matthew 6:8]. If He gave us the full picture of our lives, everything He has in store for us to do and experience, we would be overwhelmed and shut down. After all, He told us we would do greater things than Jesus did [John 14:12].
God is faithful and just [Deuteronomy 32:4]. We can trust Him and the way He works in and through our lives. We can rest in knowing while we cannot begin to imagine what the completed work of our lives will look like, He’s already seen it and He’s guiding us to completion [Philippians 1:6]. What piece of the puzzle has He given you today? Isn’t it about time to put it in place?
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