I’ve never been a “puzzle person.” To be honest, I find them stressful and too complicated! It’s very hard for me to see a puzzle through to the end on my own, which is why I gave them up around the age of 12.

I will admit, however, that I was rooting for my fellow retreatants as they worked on the puzzle in the common room at Wisdom House. Each day I’d check and a bit more of the picture would be completed. First the border of course, but then a wagon wheel and some flowers. It wasn’t the most artistic of photos, but it was sort of a thrill to see it coming together.

At one point I even found the proper home for a stray piece myself! And then another. And another! If I were at home and solely responsible for puzzle success, the excitement would soon dwindle and then fade as I got stuck. But here, when I hit my puzzle block after the fourth piece, I knew that I could leave the puzzle alone and next time I snuck a peek, more of the picture would be completed.

Towards the end of the retreat, spurred on by my minimal success, I returned to the puzzle to give it another go to find ... that it was already finished!

Which is when the analogy hit me … group puzzle solving is kind of like community. On our own we may not have the wherewithal, energy or expertise to complete the entire picture, but together we will find our way. Piece by piece, person by person, we work together at seeking wisdom and building the kindom of God.


Anonymous said...

Ooh, sweet reflection! We've got the mother of all wicked puzzles going right now, and I think we're all ready to put it back in the box and pick something different to do as a group! (Oh, but and look, there's the solution right there at that link...!)

Tess said...

Nice observation!

Turtle Lady said...

Great observation. Perhaps now I'll enjoy puzzles more too... when shared with good people!