“We are impatient, anxious to see the whole picture, but God lets us see things slowly, quietly.”
I do not have a lot of patience. I also don’t excel at sitting still. This would be fine if I liked to exercise or be adventurous, but I don’t. So vacations can be tricky, as it is even unclear to me what would help me recharge. For the past few years we have been heading to the Outer Banks which provides a great balance of all the things I like to do the most and those I hate to do the least, like puzzles. This year I discovered a 550 piece puzzle called "Blue Lighthouse." I told the kids I wanted to complete it by the week’s end. After constructing the actual Lighthouse from about 20 of the pieces, my patience began to wear thin as the ocean and sky pieces were indistinguishable and infuriating. "Just make the picture on the box Dad," three-year old Norah encouraged. At first it was cute but by the 50th time she suggested that I just replicate the image, my patience was all but gone. After snapping at one child for messing up my non-existent system, I noticed 12-year old Annie staring at the puzzle box. As I flopped onto the couch exasperated, Annie quietly knelt at the table and began separating the sea of blue pieces into smaller piles. Within a few minutes hues of purples and royal blues became more visible as did some clouds and waves. Norah switched from nudging me to congratulating her older sister. "NaNa (Annie) you’re making the picture!" Annie smiled and whispered to her sister loud enough for me to hear, "The pieces only make sense if you look at the picture."
How often in my life and leadership do I jump into trying to connect pieces without thinking about the whole picture? How quickly do I get frustrated with things that don’t seem to fit because my gaze is too small? Do I help those I lead study the whole scene before jumping into their specific role? If I thought about the picture of my whole life in the way the Lord has painted it, would some of the individual pieces connect differently or better? Prayers for what you are trying to piece together this week!