By Belinda Davis

The missing piece


I have always enjoyed jigsaw puzzles. As a young child I used to do the jigsaw puzzle with the picture side up, and then redo it with the picture facing down.

Just recently, my family has rekindled my love of this puzzle-solving activity and we have been attempting complex jigsaw puzzles of 1,000 pieces or more.

Not so long ago, we were nearing the completion of a puzzle and I was stuck completing the sky. I looked at the space that still needed to be filled and counted 23 spaces. I counted the pieces still to be placed and arrived at 22.

We had been working on this puzzle for a week, and after all that effort would we be one piece short?

I hunted around on the floor – nothing. I checked in the box – nothing. I checked on my lap, in the ducted heating vent, in my shoe, on the dog, in my daughter's shirt, in the fridge; no luck. The missing piece was nowhere to be found.

I then completed the puzzle hoping that somehow those 22 pieces would magically fill the 23 spaces, but, no—what lay before me was a lovely picture with one piece missing.

I was unable to see the picture as a whole because it wasn't complete. It didn't matter about the 999 pieces all in their rightful place—that one missing piece drew my eyes to it like a magnet.

My husband reminded me of the analogy that each person has a God-shaped hole in their being. People work hard to fill that hole with other things—relationships, money, family, work, activities or food, but they're all a poor substitute.

A Bible writer spoke about this in Acts chapter 17, verses 26–28: "Starting from scratch, God made the entire human race and made the earth hospitable, with plenty of time and space for living so we could seek after God, and not just grope around in the dark but actually find Him. He doesn't play hide-and-seek with us. He's not remote; He's near."-

What are we filling our own God-shaped hole with – is it a relationship with God or something else??

Used with permission. This article first appeared in the Salvation Army's Warcry magazine