Piecing Puzzles


From the very beginning of this online dating adventure, I truly desired God’s plan for me regarding marriage and dating – nothing else would be good, even if I initially thought so. I had already proved that by my past choices.

So I decided that if God actually had a third marriage (my confession? I still cringe writing that…) for me, the only way I would end up with that special person – the one God had planned; the best of the best-for me; the only man of my dreams was for me to submit myself and every man I met to him in prayer. I became like a little kid doing a puzzle.

“Does this fit, Daddy?”

With puzzle pieces, you can often tell right away from the color, design or shape that they don’t match. Sometimes, it isn’t as obvious, but if you hold it a bit closer and scrutinize the lines, you can, with close observation, see that they don’t actually go together well. And then there are those pieces that look so perfect that we think, “Aha! I found it!” Everything appears to be a match, but when we attempt to fit it together, we recognize that the two pieces don’t belong together. The edges are a touch off. We may try to force it, but even if we can get it together, the gaps are obvious.

Maybe we do that with people we date. Sometimes the ones that initially seem like they may be a good fit end up missing something. Even though we can see the gaps and how the edges don’t quite measure up, we force it, deciding that this is the best it will ever be. We choose to settle for that mismatch – we’re tired of looking; or we long to feel secure in something even if it isn’t the right or best thing; or we desperately want a relationship so we will feel loved.

When my two youngest kids attempt to put together one of those 1,000 piece puzzles designed for 12+ ages (of which ages they are not), they frequently force pieces together that don’t belong. My husband and I end up carefully separating those pieces and finding the correct place for them. Let’s be real – you wouldn’t actually put together a puzzle with mismatched pieces and continue trying to finish it! Even one piece messes up the entire puzzle.

Thank goodness that God is able to undo our mistakes and rearrange the pieces so they fit again. Even after we force something that was our idea, not his, he helps us begin again to find the correct fit.

The truth is that only God knows who fits best with me. So I began the search by asking him every day to lead me to that person. I wanted my eyes and ears open. I prayed for the man God would someday bring me, and I prayed that while I waited, he would make me into someone who would be a blessing to that person. God’s way. God’s timing. Guess what? He did.


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