29 January 2010

Jigsaw puzzles...

A little known fact about me is that I LOVE to do jigsaw puzzles. Don't have the time (or space) to do them as often as I would like, but I love them. All the little pieces that, individually don't make any sense, come together (slowly but surely) to form a picture of beauty, peace, serenity. I am big on puzzles that can be framed after completion and put on a wall somewhere as a piece of art. And occasionally, if I see a puzzle that will have "meaning" to someone else, I will put it together, write a message on the back of the puzzle and then put it in the mail to them for them to put together and enjoy. (But you can only do this for certain people - and the puzzle has to be fairly small and easy to put together - or the recipient might get frustrated by the gesture, not intrigued)

Everyone who does puzzles has their own method of attack to completing the puzzle. I, personally, am a "get the frame together first" person. The frame pieces all have the straight edge to identify them and therefore, they are easy to pick out of the bunch. Once you get the frame together, it is "easy" to fill in the puzzle from the outside in. Others like to get all the pieces that look alike or that make up an easily identifiable part of the puzzle together first. Whatever floats your boat.

And the puzzle business is big business. You have all kinds of puzzles to buy: big ones, small ones, themed ones, challenging ones, 3-D ones, circular ones (yeah, I haven’t tried any of those yet). And there are puzzle accessories – glue and storage mats and tables…well, lots of stuff to help you with your puzzle making fascination. The point is: it is a cool hobby to have (in my opinion). You can do it alone – or occasionally, a friend may come over and “help” – adults can do it as well as children – it’s nice and quiet, doesn’t disturb anyone while you are doing it. And at the end of the process, you have something long lasting to show for it.

People are like jigsaw puzzles too, if you think about it. Some of us are still at the “framing” stage – waiting to be filled in. Some of us have chunks of ourselves well defined and just looking for a place to land in the total scheme of things. And some of us are just out of the box: a straight up mess that looks to be without rhyme or reason. But God is the ultimate “puzzle put-ter-together-er”. He sees the big picture of our lives and is making the moves within our lives to make us whole – to make our puzzle perfect – if we will allow Him to. Sometimes, it takes time…the pieces that look like they should fit together don’t and you have to adjust and rearrange – you cannot “force” a puzzle piece to fit – not if you want the picture to be complete in the end. I have learned that patience is a skill any true puzzler has to develop – be patient with yourself as God puts you together as He sees you.

Be blessed.

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