… puzzled…

… puzzled…

“This piece is not here. I know it’s missing. I have tried every piece of the same color.” Tom and I were convinced several times of this truth as we worked a puzzle last week.

We began a puzzle Valentine’s day—a diversion to change routine and see visible progress on these days filled with sameness. All the straight edge pieces found their place on the table without much difficulty.

We decided quickly it had been more fun walking the streets of Hallstatt, Austria, lunching in cozy cafes, cooling off in ancient dark churches. Certainly putting a thousand pieces of Hallstatt in perfect order would be a challenge.

There were so..oooo many shades of blues and greens, you know, just a tiny difference; at times, completing this appeared impossible… hopeless. We almost dumped it back in the box one day; we had reached an impasse. We found no way to proceed in one section.  It was then I ‘felt’ with gentle touching… ever so carefully, and discovered that one of us had placed two pieces almost identical in shade and shape in wrongly. They just didn’t work. That one error kept the whole next line from fitting together.


Webster defines puzzle… are you ready for this?  More than 40 words, either nouns or verbs, are synonyms for puzzle. From astonished, bewildered, confusion, mystery, riddle, tangle, maze, issue, question, perplexed…  uncertain, mystified, ambiguity, paradox. Shall I list more? I like this one: to exercise one’s mind, as over a problem.

All these words sound like life to me. It’s all such an enigma.

What happens when the pieces just don’t fit? When I want to throw away what I began. When I’m convinced the right piece is missing…

I awoke in the middle of the night this week… puzzled. Issues in our family discourage me, uncertainties in the world bewilder me, causing questions and confusion. I am perplexed  as in which direction I should go in this maze.

A  thought whispered in the dark, “When your spirit grows faint within you; when you are overwhelmed, it is I who know your way.” I pondered this verse in every translation. (Psalm 142:3

These are the very words David prayed when he was in the cave at Adullam. This future king of Israel was running for his life, forced into a cave. The Hebrew word translated faint or overwhelmed means muffled… as to cover with a garment—covered with darkness. David could not see a solution, he had no heart to try.

But the Lord knew…

David was caught in a tangled web. He had no idea which way to go, but he affirms… it is You, Lord, who know my way.

The puzzle is answered; it is complete; it is finished. He knows the way. When I am…  when you are… overwhelmed, and in the dark, when faint… when the pieces of life don’t fit together. “It is You who know my way…”

He has the perfect piece of the puzzle…

Everyone gets cave time says Ray Noah. https://raynoah.com/2018/03/30/everybody-gets-cave-time-3/ Maybe we need the cave these weeks to find the right piece to the uncertainties of life. God can do his best work in the cave.  After all, David became King of Israel soon after these very dark moments.

There is no way Tom and I could have begun this puzzle without the picture on the box . How would we have known what went where? How could we have seen how colors changed without warning…

“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.” Psalm 119:105

“I am the way, and the truth and the life,” Jesus answers. John 14:6

… a peace in the puzzle…


About oct17

The little girl in me loves bird watching, butterflies, sunrises, sunsets, walks in the rain; the adult I am enjoys the same. I sense God's awesomeness in all of life--what wonder there is in slicing a leek or cutting open a pomegranate. I have many favorite things--a formation of Canadian geese flying overhead, the giggles of my grand daughters, the first ripe watermelon in summer, snowflakes on my face--these gifts from my heavenly Father delight me continually.
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4 Responses to … puzzled…

  1. Mette says:

    Fantastic ! Amen 🙏💓 I really like this! 🥰👍 Thank you Xxxx


  2. Joan Hester says:

    I really enjoyed this, as well as my husband. Look forward to your blogs…


  3. Lori Harvey says:

    Barb, you amaze me.


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