Bigger Picture

We can only see a small piece of our life-puzzle and we’re not really sure how it’s going to fit or how it will contribute to the bigger picture.

Genesis 45:1-28

Reference: v.5 And now, do not be distressed and do not be angry with yourselves for selling me here, because it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you. (NIV Bible)

Explore: The most annoying part in doing a jigsaw puzzle is sorting out all the pieces at the beginning.  The edge pieces going in this pile, the blue pieces going in that pile…  Even with a smaller 500 piece puzzle this process can feel like it’s taking forever!  When you sort the pieces you have to keep each pile fairly general as you are never really sure of where the piece may be located within the puzzle.  A blue piece could be a part of the water, the sky, the boat, the house, the flowers and so on.  You have to wait until you find other matching blue pieces so that you can put them together.  Then you need to look at the picture on the box to see where those pieces fit into the bigger  picture.
That can be a little bit like life sometimes.  We can only see a small piece of our life-puzzle and we’re not really sure how it’s going to fit or how it will contribute to the bigger picture.  But after you slot a few pieces together you can sometimes stop and see how they could fit into the whole picture.  Usually this will only happen once a few pieces of the life-puzzle have come together.

Application: Joseph had many pieces to his life-puzzle.  I’m sure as he was a servant in Potiphar’s house he was wondering how this would fit into the bigger picture.  I’m sure that when he was living in the dungeons of Pharaoh for years he was confused how his life-puzzle had included such a dreaded piece.  And yet, when he finally revealed himself to his brothers, Joseph was able to see with great clarity his position in the bigger picture.  He was able to see that everything he went through – rejection, betrayal, slavery, imprisonment – was all part of the journey that led him to save lives during the current famine.  We may not always understand why particular situations happen in our lives but often when we get to the end of a particular journey we can look back and see how God has used each piece of the puzzle to create a beautiful picture.

Prayer: Lord, we don’t always see the bigger picture, but we trust that You do.  Help us to rely on You during the dark pieces and to rejoice with you during the bright pieces.  Amen.

What does your life-puzzle look like at the moment?  Are you holding a dark piece or a bright piece?  Where does it fit into your bigger picture?

This article was written by Linda Bailey

Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.