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Name: Linda

Location: Texas

I am a wife, mom and grandma. I am doing what I've wanted to do all my life. I am a Christian and I love the Lord.

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Friday, January 18, 2008
Life is Like a Crossword Puzzle
At the risk of sounding like Forrest Gump, I have been thinking that life is like a crossword puzzle. A couple of weeks ago my husband and I went to our favorite Half Price Books store because they were having a twenty percent off sale (who could possibly resist that?). We found a bunch of puzzle books marked down to one dollar each and then with twenty percent off…..needless to say we bought several. I like to do crossword puzzles and my husband likes the word-find puzzles.

As I’ve worked through my first book of crossword puzzles I’ve made seen some interesting parallels to my life. There are some puzzles that come together so easily. One word after another is filled in with relative ease until the whole puzzle is completed – every little square filled in with its proper letter. It’s fun but not much of a challenge.

Then there are the puzzles where I hum along nicely and then suddenly run into one particular word I just can’t figure out. I can usually manage to fill in enough words around it to figure it out. Once I have enough letters filled in, it suddenly all becomes very clear. This may happen several times, some words harder than others to figure out, but eventually this puzzle is all filled in too.

However, more often than I care to admit, there are puzzles that contain words I absolutely cannot figure out. I come at them from every angle – filling in some of the letters but never enough to help me find the right word. I try everything, sitting there puzzling and puzzling over those words that just don’t make any sense. It is amazing how difficult it becomes to see a word when the key letters are missing. I confess that there have been many times I’ve finally turned to the answer pages in the back of the book. Usually when I see the answer it is very obvious. There are times though when there is no way I would have ever known that particular word.

As I lay in bed this morning I had a mental conversation with God about crossword puzzles and my life. It went something like this:

“Lord, there are times when my life has been just like those easy crossword puzzles. Everything seems to fit nicely. Prayers are answered; life goes along pretty much the way I’d planned, and I understand it all. I am so thankful for those times.”

“Yes. Life is like that sometimes.”

“And Father, there have been times when life becomes difficult, and I get stuck in a hard situation and can’t figure out what the right “word” is. Remember all those years of trying to deal with that difficult person. You know how hard I prayed that you would change them; that You would somehow cause them to see the places in their life that needed to change; that they would see that their behavior was hurtful to those around them. You know I tried every way I could to figure out how to make that person different.”

“Yes, I remember.”

“Then that day at Bible Study, Lord, the “word” I was looking for suddenly stood out so clearly. It was me You were wanting to change! It took time, but we worked on it and things got so much better. The puzzle made sense. I am so thankful for that.

"Yes child."

“But Abba, there are situations where I just haven’t been able to find the right “word”. When Barbara died, I just couldn’t work the puzzle. I have never been able to find the right letters to fill in all the little squares. Two little boys left without a mother who loved them so dearly; a grief-stricken husband who adored her. Then he remarried, and it was never right. Years later there was that divorce and the boys suffered. They are grown men now and there is still one who is so far from You. I don’t understand how the pieces to this one fit.

And Lisa’s friend, Father, the one who died so tragically. We cannot seem to make any sense of it. We prayed for her, and the pain never got any better. It all seemed so senseless, and she was their only child.

Perhaps if we could just fill in some of the “words” around these questions we could find an answer that makes sense to us. But nothing seems to work. The blanks remain. Is there some way I can see the answers Father? Could I take a peek at the back of the book?”

“I understand child. Yes, there are some things to which you have no answers. You have seen me work in those other situations where things were made clear. You know that I love you and that I only do those things which are for your ultimate good. You may rest assured that there are answers. You cannot see them now, but there will come a time when all the blanks will be filled in, and you will see how it all fits together perfectly. For now I ask you to trust me. Some day we will look at the back of the book together.”

“Yes Abba, I understand. I love You; I trust You, and I am so thankful for who You are.”

I must give credit to my sweet friend Ann for the idea of writing my post as a conversation with the Lord. She does it far more beautifully than I ever could, and it was on her blog that I first saw it done.

  posted at 11:00 AM

At 11:10 AM, Blogger Linds said...

Words fail me, Linda. This is absolutely beautiful. You have the most amazing gift, my friend. Truth, in such perfect words.

At 4:10 PM, Blogger Diane J. said...

What a beautiful illustration, Linda. I do believe this is the best thing you've ever written. You've just opened up our understanding of these Bible principles. Awesome!

Hope your weekend is blessed. ;o)

Love and hugs,


At 4:26 PM, Blogger momrn2 said...

Fabulous word picture for something so deep within each of us!!

At 8:38 PM, Blogger Dawn said...

Beautiful, just beautiful. Linds said just what I was going to say - you have a gift, and I don't think you even realize it!

At 8:25 PM, Blogger nancygrayce said...

That was so beautiful and soooo true!

At 11:49 AM, Blogger Cyndi said...

Wow. Just, wow. This was profound and I love it!!!

At 6:42 PM, Blogger eph2810 said...

What a beautiful conversation, Linda.

So many times I would like to look at God's back-page to understand things. But like you said, we just have to trust Him - He knows what is good for us, even when we don't see it.

Thank you so much for sharing, Linda.

Be blessed today and always.

At 10:31 PM, Blogger Heart of Wisdom said...

I liked this. I love object lessons. I use them a lot on my blog.

Found you from Holy Experience.

I'll be browsing.



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