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  • Writer's pictureBarbara Byers

The Puzzle

Updated: Oct 13, 2021

I like puzzles of all kinds--jigsaws, crosswords, sudokus, math puzzlers. I just enjoy solving enigmas and working puzzles. Mystery draws me. Recently I was working on a puzzle that depicted the streets of New York City during the Jazz Age of the 1920s. It was 1000 pieces, colorful and complex. About the third day I started waning because each piece was taking so long to place. Did I say complex? One afternoon some friends came by for a short visit and noticed the puzzle out on my table. They like jigsaws too. As we were visiting they sat down and casually starting moving pieces in place, in fact some were pieces I hadn’t been able to locate and place. They didn’t stay long but it was long enough to give me a wee boost of confidence. Encouragement poured out of them in the most natural way, as it often does when someone is filled with His light and walking in His Spirit.

I told them I was thinking of giving up and not finishing the final parts of the night skyline. “No, you can do this,” came forward, “you’re almost there.” I laughed, but later thought of Hebrews 10:23-25, that exhortation to spur one another on, encouraging one another to continue even when our spirits are flagging. Although this was just a little puzzle of no great importance, the pouring in of these friends was more than enough for me. I couldn’t help but finish that thing!

Later, I sent a phone picture to the friend who had lent me this new puzzle. Her response: “Well, if you can do it, I can do it.” Hmm…life begetting life. We receive from one another something of Him, then we are able to take that in and send it out to another. When our confidence is weakening, we have those beautiful ones around us, the saints, who can say as Paul did: “Come on, you can do it, follow my example as I follow Christ” (1 Cor. 11:1). We do, and then find others following us. His beautiful mystery.


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