A Prayer for the New Year

Every year at Christmas our kids get us a jigsaw puzzle.

A great Friday night date for my husband and I is to build a fire, turn on the music and puzzle away….a simple, quiet joy for us. (You 30 somethings are wondering which planet we’re on, I’m sure…).

The joke around here is if the puzzle goes on the card table on the day after Christmas, we can usually finish it by the first or so of June, when the ‘kids’ show up again for Father’s Day.

Anyway, every year but this one…..but I found an unopened treasure from last year–Eureka!  Now all I need is a nice warm fire in the fireplace and a cup of cocoa.

Jigsaw puzzles got me thinking about tying up the ‘loose ends’ of this year and looking at the new one on the horizon.  How can I focus on what God wants?–there are just TOO MANY PIECES….and I’m not sure what the frame even looks like.

I began to think of you, dear friends, some of who’ve typed me personal notes, those I’ve exchanged emails with sharing prayer requests, joys and some not so joyful times. I thought of the challenges we face, the aspirations, the daily ness of our walk with Jesus.

As I was praying today, these words came to mind:

“Father, we give you all the pieces of our lives, rounded, jagged, not fitting together.
We place the ideas, dreams and desires,
the want-to’s and the need-to’s,
the prayers for family and friends,
the cries of our heart to follow you, into your hands.
Show us the puzzle frame, Father.  Help us to fit into your plan.
Keep our eyes on the picture of what we should look like.
Help us to pick up one piece at a time.
Show us how to consider each one well, notice the round edges,
observe the ways it could work–‘maybe over here?’ ‘maybe over there?’
Remind us that it takes time to make something beautiful.
That we will not finish it in a week, or a month.
That we may need to ponder and puzzle over the pieces more than once,
laying them down and picking them up with a fresh look the next day.
Remind us Father, that when we surrender everything
lay it all out on the table
that YOU can take it and make it into
something beautiful in your time.
Philippians 3:13,14
“(this) one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead,  
    I press on toward the goal to win the prize
for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”
Linking with the wonderful Jennifer Ferguson and the Soli Deo Gloria community.
More encouraging words over there!
I took these photos last summer when we had a wayward bug land on the plastic trays we used for sorting puzzle pieces.  According to my favorite gardening guru Margaret Roach, these are just plain old squash beetles.

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6 thoughts on “A Prayer for the New Year

  1. Thank you, Laura; you are too kind. And you have been one of my greatest encouragers. The feeling is mutual, my friend. Happy blessed New Year to you.

  2. Jen, thanks. Hmmmmmmm…an 'errant piece' in the box? Now there's a thought. Sometimes I try to fit things in that God never put there to begin with. I like that 🙂

  3. Kath–thanks for your thoughts. I might just print this out and tape it somewhere so I remember it, too! One. piece. at. a. time.

  4. Such a beautiful prayer, Jody. Thank you so much for this. I have so enjoyed getting to know you in 2012. You are a blessing to me, friend. The happiest of New Years to you.

  5. Oh, Jody, this is such a great post. The part where you talk about “so many pieces” really hit home for me. It's good for me to pay attention to make sure an “errant” piece didn't make it into the wrong box.

  6. A beautiful prayer. I love this. One piece at a time…and it takes time to make something beautiful. I am always struggling hard against this one. Thanks for the prayer.

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