Sweetwater Presbyterian

Small in size, Big in Faith and Love

Devotion March 15, 2017


My husband and I have a granddaughter that loves to work puzzles (we also have 3 other granddaughters and 2 grandsons - I just needed to mention that because I don’t want to leave anyone out!)  She’s three and it amazes me how well she can put puzzles together - of course I’m a grandmother and everything amazes me because I have wonderfully exceptional grandchildren (as all grandparents do!).  One time when we were watching the granddaughter we had asker her mother what sort of things she likes to do because as grandparents we feel this obligation to make our grandchildren happy all the time and we want to make sure they are doing what they like while they are at grandparents house….
So our daughter told us she liked to work puzzles and so my husband and I dutifully trotted off to the dollar store (when is the best source for grandparents to buy all sorts of wonderful items for their grandchildren) and bought several puzzles (because we are grandparents and can’t buy just one…..) in preparation of our grandchild visit.  
And sure enough our granddaughter came and when we were not running her around to playgrounds because we have learned playground hopping serves several functions - she enjoys playing at the playground, she is outside of our house, we figure the fresh air is good for us, and it wears her out which means she will go to bed at a reasonable hour and her grandparents can collapse in exhaustion at an early hour!
But there are those times when the granddaughter needs something to do in the house.  We do have a collection of random toys we have procured at various yard sales and occasionally at the store (such as one time we had 2 granddaughters at the house and quickly learned we needed 2 of the same toys in order to keep the peace and of course we had to go to the not cheap store to procure these duplicates).  
Pretty amazingly in our toy collection we have these two little plastic tractors that are ride on toys that my dad had bought my kids when they were wee and we still have them and my grandkids still ride them around our house - I”m just awestruck every time i see them ride these because of the age of these ride on toys that still work great!
Anyway, it did turn out that our granddaughter was really good at putting together these puzzles and at first my husband and I were very good at making sure that she only got one puzzle out at a time and worked it, put it away in its box and then got out another one, worked it and put it away in its box.  But then we would get busy and the next thing you would know the granddaughter had several puzzles out and they were all jumbled up together and we had to sort them out and put the puzzles together in order to get all the right pieces into the right box….
Now one would think that experienced, relatively intelligent adults who are now grandparents and who would have never allowed this puzzle mixing to take place with our own children, would learn to do something intelligent like put the puzzles somewhere we could only get them to insure that there was only one puzzle out at a time - but no, we obviously do not have the capacity to learn because after each granddaughter visit we simply put the boxes of sorted puzzle pieces onto the shelf ready to be accessed by the granddaughter on her next visit where the same routine will be repeated……
And then comes along the younger granddaughter who is just about a year younger than our older granddaughter who comes and stays with us. The younger granddaughter is quite mobile but not quite old enough yet to be able to put together puzzles.  However, she is fascinated with the  idea of puzzles and delights in finding the boxes of puzzles and dumpling them all out where her well l trained grandparents put the jumbled puzzles together for her and then put them back into their proper box.  I have every confidence that as she gets a little older she will have the same skills as her older cousin but right now not so much!
The other day the younger granddaughter came to visit along with her parents and as we all decided that an adult activity of a card game was in order, the little granddaughter, went off on her own to play which she is very good at! 
We had an enjoyable card game and then it was time for the parents and the grandchild to go home after the grandchild had been left to her own devices in the play world of the grandparents house which includes several boxes of puzzles - I think we are up to about 6 boxes of puzzles now…
So everyone leaves and my husband and I go to survey the damage which we had assured the parents was fine and we would clean it up…..  Only to find that there were 6 empty puzzle boxes and puzzle pieces strewn around the house….  We were very tired so all we could muster was to shake our heads and say, “We’ll get this in the morning” and go to bed.
So the next morning we began the great puzzle sorting.  Now, this was quite the adventure.  We had partially assembled puzzles on every table in the house and we were taking pieces and going from table to table to see which puzzle they might belong to and after a couple hours work we had 2 completed puzzles and 4 puzzles that had missing pieces…  
Now, keep in mind these puzzles only cost $1 each and the Dollar Store still had the same ones and the Dollar Store was only a 5 minute drive away and the best solution would have just been to toss the incomplete puzzles and go get new ones….
But no…… We spend the next 2 hours searching the house of missing puzzle pieces.  We went through every toy on the toy shelf, we lifted up couches and looked under them, we took cushions off couches and looked down in the sides of the couches and chairs, we lay on the floor looking under TV stands and other furniture - all to find these missing puzzle pieces…..
And we eventually did - all but one - one puzzle piece which we finally gave up on sort of because we still have in the back of our minds this one piece and occasionally one of us will find the other one looking through something or around something or behind something and we will sheepishly look at the other one and say something like - “Thought that puzzle piece might be there….”
Just like my husband and I were relentless with our puzzle piece search, so is God with his care for us.  God will forever be searching to keep us, to hold us…. no matter how lost we may get, God will never stop reaching out to us and putting us back together.  
Someday we will find that one remaining puzzle piece - and just as I am convinced of that - God is that focused on you - so don’t ever worry about being so lost that you are out of his reach!


These devotions began in 2006 as a way to give us a midweek boost as we live out our lives as the people of God!  Feel free to share them if you wish.