Thursday, January 5, 2012


Do you have those times in life when it feels like you are looking at a pile of puzzle pieces, thinking there is no way those random shapes, sizes and colors will ever fit into a reasonable picture? Or, you have worked the puzzle part way through, and you are positive at least one piece is missing, that there will never be a completed picture, no matter how hard you try? You will never figure it out.

Puzzles are popular at our family gatherings. They will group around the mess of pieces scattered on the table, competing to fit in more pieces, or the one elusive piece. "That's the one I have been looking for!" Most frustrating is for one person to walk up, look for a few moments, find a piece, fit it in and walk off triumphant, the others glaring at them.

This puzzle, here, had pieces all almost exactly the same shape. The colors were similar, all blacks, grays and whites. It was a frustrating challenge for them. I neglected to take a photo of the completed puzzle - should have, just for the sense of accomplishment.

The pieces of our days, of events, of circumstances, of relationships, can look as puzzling as this random pile. Making sense of it all, finding the beauty of the finished picture, seems elusive and frustrating.

How do we turn this:
into this?
One piece at a time. Turning the shapes around until they fit, searching for similar colors, having the patience to look and watch and compare and seek and find. And it is most fun with others to help, a combined effort, not a solo task.

And for our lives? One day at a time. One random hour at a time. One colorful person at a time. Fitting the tasks together, patiently trying to understand and fit them into a completed whole. The best we can do is to keep trying, attempting to fit random pieces together as best as we can see or understand. And if they don't fit, try another one, or turn it a different way to see a new perspective. And, finding the fun in the combined effort, working together through life with family and friends, not a solo task.

The next time (maybe today? [it is for me]) you are puzzling over life's complexities, think of it as part of a puzzle, fitting the pieces, your days together one at a time. And, have fun with it.


  1. Where on earth do you come up with so many intriguing ideas for your readers to contemplate? You give us ideas for our pockets to carry with us through-out the week. So many aspects of our lives can be puzzling: how to raise children, how to get along with "different" personalities among extended family, how to uncover the mystery of the source of one's pain whether spiritual or physical, when to make a career change, etc. Thank you for reminding me to take one puzzle piece at a time, one day at a time.
    Karen A.

  2. I've been looking for some pieces lately. Thanks for this :)