Working with What Is

I like order, and I have high expectations. These are two things that don't always help in relationships, especially the ones you do not choose – you know, the relationships you are born into (family) and the relationships you have to have (neighbors and co-workers). In these cases, most of the time, you just have to work with what you have and do the best you can.

I was reminded of all this recently while working on a puzzle. Take a look again at the picture. Did you notice there aren't any edge pieces? Notice all the gaps?

My Mom sent me this puzzle after giving up on it herself. She finished the edge, got one corner and a few sections done... and then packed it up and mailed it to me –  only she forgot to send me the parts she had finished. (I'll be picking them up soon!)

Until then, I'm working with what I have and doing the best I can. I thought it would be impossible, but it has been both fun and do-able. I work with chunks of color and groups of words. I build on what's there and don't stress when I can't get a section all the way done (since I know parts are missing). I'm not sure, but I think I'm enjoying this puzzle more than others I've done – my expectations are lower and the celebration is higher: "hey, look at that!"

Until that day when "all the broken and dislocated pieces of the universe – people and things, animals and atoms – get properly fixed and fit together in vibrant harmonies" (Colossians 1:20, MSG), people (and some puzzles) are just going to have a few things missing. But they both can still be loved, appreciated and enjoyed, if you accept what is.

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