The Puzzle Parable

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It was the first day of class, and a handful of preschool students filled the classroom with laughter and excitement. Despite the abundant learning resources in every corner, most students were more interested in entertainment than in education. The instructor realized the immaturity of the children and that this lesson would involve a lifetime. 

The teacher, wise and experienced, knew the challenges he faced with unlocking potential. So he wasted no time. When the school bell rang, he directed students to their seats to work on the puzzles he had laid before them. 

As they turned the pieces color-side up, the children’s interest grew. Some puzzles varied in color, while others were of a particular hue.  When requested, the teacher personally attended to each child with encouragement and help. If students preferred to work alone, the instructor allowed them to do so. Although the schedule included many other activities, daily work on the jigsaw puzzle proved vital to his plan of education. 

The children soon discovered that their puzzles weren’t easy to complete. When pieces connected, others mysteriously appeared. As the year progressed, the puzzles proved three-dimensional when they fitted them together into another’s projects. Properly connected, certain pieces glowed like a prism holding mysterious light and expanded with unseen energy to draw fellow students to its radiance.  

As the years progressed, the difficulty of completion increased. Initial enthusiasm waned when the need for endurance and perseverance was stressed. At times, pieces appeared that seemed not to fit at all, and at other times an important piece seemed missing. The worst monotonous days, tediously connecting pieces that all looked alike. 

Students who sat nearest the instructor proved the most efficient, while those bent on individualism grew in frustration. The latter often moved their desks along the outside wall for a better view of the playground. Although the tutor urged these with tenderest care, they could only hear to whom they looked.

Unity and communication were the core values of the classroom, but not all students cooperated. Some, to be sure, crossed the room to guide a fellow pupil through a difficulty, but others only criticized or complained. These felt sure that leaving their own work slowed them down in some way. 

The best students advanced, not because of a lack of complications but in spite of them. They learned to thank their instructor for each challenge, gradually believing that he best knew how to empower their potential. The teacher offered a handbook to all, but at first glance, it appeared technical and dry. However, the more they studied it, the more it unlocked the secrets of the puzzle before them. 

You are the student, and your life is the radiant, multi-dimensional puzzle set before you. Each piece is a day, a month, or a season portraying His Life in you on earth. The Holy Spirit is your instructor, ever waiting to reveal meaning to your disjointed days. The manual is God’s Word, written with His Voice, always speaking diligently about this exchanged life.

Students with their eyes on the playground are those allowing cares and pleasures to distract them from fulfilling their destiny. Advanced students do not have the most skill or talent, but accept their learning difficulties and depend upon the Instructor for each decision. He alone understands how both the monotony and the crises fit together into His perfect plan. 

What kind of student will you be today? Will you shadow your Instructor and His manual? Will you seek to interconnect with the joys and difficulties of fellow pupils? Will you value your piece as vital to extend His purpose on earth? 

There is only one key to solving the puzzle of your life: trusting your Instructor. He prepared your pieces just as they are. He alone knows how they interconnect. Why not move your desk closer to Him?