Welcome to my eclectic journey of my life and delights. This year my theme is surrendering my writing pen to the true author, Jesus Christ, while looking forward to the future, reflecting on the past and dancing through my journey.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Time to Hand Me Another Piece

Driving two hours by myself after two days of non-stop talking... well, I was silent.  I meditated on the weekend the Lord had provided for Ethel and me.  Thoughts swirled around in my heart and head as I cried out to the Lord, "Please put them in order. Show me what you accomplished."

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The picture started to unfold.

Years ago as new brides, we each had our own mental picture painted in our heads on how life would progress.  The finished picture of the future stood prominently on display as we gently and carefully placed each puzzle piece into its place.  Yes, there were adjustments along the way, but for the most part, the puzzle pieces went into place with ease.

Jump forward 30 plus years later.  The table still displays the unfinished puzzle of both of our lives...our faith still holds each piece together. However, the storms of life have blown the original picture, which guided our selection for the next puzzle piece, away.  As we visit, we acknowledge that some of the original pieces had fallen to the floor as the storms took the picture away.  Some of the pieces had been lost!

We turn to each other with the realistic awareness that we no longer know what the end picture is to look like.  We now stand trying to put pieces into place without a visual guide.
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One would pick up a piece and say, "You think this will fit?  Maybe you need to turn that piece.  Does this one fit in at another angle from what you envisioned?  How about following a new picture so the pieces you have now been given will continue to fit the puzzle?  It is fine, it is just different than you had thought."

I believe we both left with new pieces of our life's puzzles added to our developing puzzle of life.  Some of the pieces that looked dark in color before we visited have now changed to brighter colors, reflecting hope.

We began some practical placing of inspirational pieces into our puzzle.  Ethel was in need of some inspirational pieces that would bring out her creative side again, after her puzzle had gone through extreme changes.  So off to the bookstore we drove.

Lucy suggested, "Walk around until your eye catches something.  Look at the magazine until you are inspired, even if it is something you have never thought of."

Within a few minutes, Ethel's eyes were sparkling as she flipped through a magazine showing vintage, embellished clothing.  She began to design ideas in her head and out through her mouth.

So what did we do?  We hopped back into the car and headed for thrift stores.  By the end of our shopping day, we had gathered together enough material to make four outfits.  Now don't be surprised if Ethel comes out with her own vintage-shabby-chic clothing line.

I grabbed my own inspiration.  Yes, I found this....now I am on the hunt and pinning anything that has to do with Vintage Campers.  Mary Jane's Farm will be coming out with a book called Glamping with Mary Jane.- a must-have guide for adding glamour to outdoor pursuits for the backyard and beyond.
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Now this has been a summer for releasing the puzzle picture of the past that I had put into my head and grasping the picture God has created instead.  As I look to the Master Puzzle builder, I rejoice that He allows us to be His hands and feet...and sometimes that means picking up a puzzle piece for a friend and putting it into place.  I came home and picked up some pieces I had allowed to fall to the floor...it is my choice to place them back in the puzzle.  Neglect or discouragement can fog our eyesight and make the pieces seem to not fit into the puzzle.  The truth still rings in my ear, "He isn't finished yet!"

May you be a puzzle builder....and may you rejoice as others come along side you to help when your pieces have been scattered on the floor.  I know I sure am.  So Lucy and Ethel made their individual drives home, with new puzzles being arranged on their table.  Only He knows what the puzzle looks like when finished.

17 Joining in with more words:


I love both ... time with friends and time alone.

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

Like the mosaic or tapestry... the beauty is not always apparent while you are doing the work... He is not finished... love that... and I love the excitement over what He may be up to next in your and Ethel's lives. I will be cheering and lifting you up from the sidelines!! blessings ~ tanna
ps guess what I will be enjoying this morning??? thank you from the bottom of my heart. xoxo t.

Debbie said...

Oh Janette this was soo good, and I soo get it. I think I have been over her struggling and trying to jam some pieces into place not accepting the fact that the puzzle has changed, and it is STILL changing, This has been such a good summer of growth for you. Glad you got to go on this trip! Have a good week-end! HUGS

Vee said...

Oh dear...I'm struggling with this one...perhaps it is because I do not like puzzles. I'll have to think of it as a project on the loom or baking a cake. Cake! That I can bend my head around.

As Debbie says, this has been an amazing summer of growth for you. I think it may be because you purposed in your heart to have it be so and believed accordingly.

Debbie Petras said...

Life is a puzzle at times. I work at putting the pieces together but find that the Only One who can do that is the Lord. When I lean on Him and trust Him, the pieces seem to come together. And it's not always the way I had envisioned.

So glad you had this time with your Ethel.

Blessings and love,

Sandy said...

I wholly agree with what Vee said. I think you really did purpose in your heart to have an amazing summer of growth and you are experiencing it. It's true that we get just what we believe for. So, let's keep believing for God's best in ours and our families lives as He so masterfully works and helps us put all the pieces together into His beautiful picture.

Lisa said...

Love this post Janette! How boring our lives would have been had the puzzle looked like we wanted it to. We have all had to learn some hard lessons but "I wouldn't trade nothin' for my journey now."

Sonja said...

You are really onto somehing here! My mom used o tell me hat God never stopped working things ou in our lives, right to the day we go to heaven. Your puzzles this past week has become cleareer for right now... the overall puzzle is a changing thing, and you are adapting and seeing new things as you continue to move forward! Good going Janette!! :)

Debbie said...

I read this one slowly, kind of letting my head wrap around so many things that you said here. I love how you remind us that faith is what holds the puzzle together. I love how you say that with age and wisdom comes the knowledge that we don't really know the end picture; we just hold the pieces and consider just how they fit.

I wish I could have a weekend away with you! Seriously, I do. I would love to benefit from your brain, if that makes sense.

Kathy ... aka Nana said...

What an excellent analogy ... as a puzzle lover, this spoke to my heart.

Sarah (Nikki) said...

I love the pics you used to hit home your message. And it's a great reminder...He's got all the right pieces..I got to remember that....and He knows the picture He's creating...a different one than my brain can think up. Trust. Yep...going to do just that. Hey Janette...wishing you an absolute beautiful weekend.

Rebecca said...

So funny.....I posted a completed jig saw puzzle on my thrifty style blog. Hubby and I just finished it last night :)

I'm curious. Do you already have your trailer - or are you just in the idea stage???? I REALLY want one myself, but of course it has to be very, very inexpensive. They seem a little rare in my part of the country.....

Sounds like the two of you shared some valuable minutes and were like iron sharpening iron.

Great post, my dear♥

Lea also known as "CiCi" said...

Let me tell you again, you are an awesome writer and so, so inspiring!

Oh, so many pieces of my puzzle have fallen on the floor and the Lord has used friends to help me pick them up and find their place again. Thank goodness!

My "big birthday" tomorrow has caused me to reflect on how my puzzle will all fit together in the end. That's not for me to know but rather to trust to HIM who knows all things.

Thanks for a wonderful entry!

Pom Pom said...

How nice! I'm struck by how friends can spur each other on!

Canadagirl said...

You are so blessed to have a friend to help you with your puzzle. I find I have some un clarity to my puzzle and I'm having a hard time seeing the big picture. I do have to go and re read my Learning To Wait For God post here and there. To read what God showed me that week end b/c it is easy oh so easy to have my pieces knocked to the floor and feel discouraged.
Thank you for your faithful friendship and all your encouragement.

Blessings and ((HUGS)) my SSiC

Anonymous said...

I think all of us have an idea of what our "finished product" would look like in regards to daily living. I know that I sometimes imagine some type of "wonderful masterpiece."

However, as I am growing older, I'm learning that the "finished product" I am looking for is not the same one that God is looking for. My thoughts have to be alined with His and not the other way around. It's not always an easy concept for me to accept, but I'm learning . . . slowly.

This was a great story and testimony to read.

Karen said...

Such thought provoking and meaningful post Janette. We all want the box on the table with the pieces (don't we?) so we can see the outcome. Wouldn't it be an adventure if puzzles had no pictures on the outside and let the finished project be a surpise. (You've got my permission to run with this thought.) :)

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