…....and a time to rebuild. Ecclesiastes 3:3 (TLB)
Thoughts were whirring around in my mind like the contents of a blender on high speed: how to get the monster hedge trimmed; when was that particular bill due; what was that strange noise the car made, etc., etc. And in the midst of it all -what would I find to say this month to you dear sisters when my mind was so muddled with so very much.
I needed to just be still before the Lord and listen for Him to speak. One of my favorite techniques to "settle" my mind is working on a jigsaw puzzle online. There is something very calming in sorting the pieces, putting the frame together, and hearing the "click" of pieces going into place. Sometimes I challenge myself by not looking at the reference picture; and then there are times when I must refer to that picture frequently. Occasionally I do a puzzle with no picture - only a title. Those are the really hard ones!
As I worked through the process this time, I began to think about the new puzzle I was given four years ago with only a title "Linda without Ken". I had been perfectly content with the "Ken and Linda" project, but everything changed when the last piece of that picture was put in place as my beloved was called to Heaven.
Now I had a whole new set of "pieces" to put together alone. For a while I ignored it because I really didn't know what to do with it. I had no real picture of "Linda the widow" in my frame of reference. So many things were the same: the house, the car, my clothes, my friends - yet absolutely everything was different.
Yet, God is faithful, and eventually I found myself sorting and putting together the frame - finding some familiar pieces that gave me comfort - the corner house that he picked for us, the shelves and tables he made, the roses and flowers he planted. These pieces have fit very nicely into this new puzzle and give it strength.
I also found pieces that were alien - loneliness, sorrow, and yes some pieces named "anger" and "why". But these pieces are part of the whole and must be incorporated into this "Linda without Ken" picture. These are the pieces that are the hardest to fit into place.
Four years later I am still working on the puzzle - some days I just get tired of it all and put it aside - but those days don't come as often now as they once did. I am also discovering some wonderful new pieces - a deeper relationship with God than I ever could have imagined - a quiet peace in knowing that "God's got this" - the depth and beauty of each of God's promises to us in His Word - especially this one: "Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; He will neither fail you nor abandon you." Deuteronomy 31:8 - the words Moses spoke to Joshua preparing him to move forward into the land that was promised.
Moses was able to speak this to Joshua because in his own life Moses had seen the faithfulness of God to be real. And now I speak it to you dear sisters, because I too know the faithfulness of God to be real.
Father, Thank you for going before us each day as we move forward putting together these pieces of our lives now.