Pieces and parts are incomplete, useless, and meaningless.
A puzzle piece tells us nothing about the final picture. It confuses us with the unique texture and colors because it does not look like it is matchable with any other piece on the table. Even with the vision of the final picture on the top of the storage box, we find ourselves at a loss as to how to begin the puzzle. Big or small pieces makes no difference. If the textures and colors of other pieces look similar to the one we have in our hand, then we tend to gravitate toward starting with making a connection there.
But, wait! That similar looking piece that’s supposed to match up and looks like it’s supposed to connect with us, does not! This only adds to our continued confusion, frustration, anxiousness, and fear that we will never get the puzzle put together.
With a bit of perseverance, a pause, and an openness to start just by trying to make connections with any piece in front of us, voila, we miraculously make a match. This small, but meaningful match, fills us with a bit of hope, energy, and strength to try the next connection. In the beginning, most attempts are met with failure, but the few matches give momentum to the spirit to keep going. The vision always in view, acting as a beacon of hope and reference to what we are looking to create.
As the hour moves to a day or a week, we sit with progress toward finishing the puzzle. Undisturbed on the table, we walk by it on the way to work and try again to make a match. Over the evening chat, we share stories of our busy day and meander a glance around the table in hopes of making connections. Some days, we are on a roll. The matches seem to be detected effortlessly and the puzzle seems to be coming into view. Other days, we can stare at what is obvious and yet nothing makes sense. Others might offer a helping hand or give advice on how to connect the pieces, but it makes no difference. Have you experienced that? Despite someone seeing it clearly, we cannot. We do not allow them to lift the piece for us, we must complete the puzzle on our own.
After a week or so, we start asking for help. We so desire to have the puzzle complete. Others are not allowed to complete the puzzle but only provide helpful advice that will help our roadmap to the next view. As we meet success and connections, we can feel the momentum inside our thoughts, our energy rises, and the anticipation of completing the vision is more than we can stand.
It is tempting to put the last few pieces together and complete the picture. However, you can feel a bit sad as well in the process. The moments and days have been full of wonder and adventure with this puzzle, so after it is complete, what next? Will there be another puzzle to do?
For those that are glad the puzzle exercise is over, they will sit in a relieved state and never look at a puzzle again. They found it too tough, too painful, and too time-consuming to create the final puzzle.
Yet, for many, the joy and happiness of completing the puzzle is so profound that one cannot help but look forward to the next puzzle. Perhaps, will it be more pieces? Or, perhaps, will it be more complicated? That does not deter the one that has fallen in love with the pieces and the puzzle. They have discovered that the pieces make a masterpiece.
They have learned that with a puzzle you must keep your vision open to possibilities beyond what is obvious. Patience was practiced daily so that perseverance could be exercised as well. Asking for help was no longer out of the question. So many lessons learnt from working on the puzzle that there is much more confidence built to help create the next one.
Where else do we encounter pieces in our life?
Pieces of a broken glass that used to be able to nourish us with water. Pieces of a broken figurine that was once adored, got swept up and tossed in the garbage without any consideration. Pieces of leftover fabric after a beautiful dress was made are mere scraps and worthless to the seamstress. Pieces of a recipe, like the added flavor from spice.
It is hard to see the value in the pieces and parts, which is why we treat them as garbage and toss them out of site. For they are the after effects of something, the results of something happening. But, does that make them worthless? No.
A recipe is only complete when the spices are added into it. Glass scraps can be molded into a piece of art. The ceramic pieces from the figurine could be patched together to make a vase. The scraps of fabric can be sewn together for another dress that is more unique.
Simply put, pieces and parts can have more value if we do something that is purposeful with them. We need to see the potential, believe in the potential, and take our time to create the completed work. Like the puzzle, it takes a vision of what is, to align the eyes to see the potential. Knowing the vision and seeing it so clearly allows you to believe every day. The patience of working with the pieces and creating the right connections is where the magic is found.
Sometimes, you might not even have enough scraps of fabric to complete the newly “visioned-out” dress, so one must wait for more pieces. Ironically, now that there is a purpose for the pieces, one sees the value in the pieces and quickly shifts the thinking from worthless to needed and treasured. The anxiousness for more broken pieces or more scraps becomes more intense. Now, no longer are the pieces a nuisance. They are sought after because one has learnt that they can create even greater treasures with the pieces, or unique things that are beautiful.
What are the pieces and parts of you that you think are worthless, not valued or treasured?
What are the broken pieces of yourself that you have buried deep as scraps and have considered useless, in an effort to ensure that the broken pieces do not hurt you? We know that the rough edges of broken pieces always can cut.
A person’s life is made up of lots of pieces and parts. Some are broken parts and other pieces are simply collected along the way daily. Experiences create many pieces and parts. Often, there are so many pieces and parts that we choose to separate them into the useless pieces and the valuable ones. In the baggage we carry around, we can easily connect and identify the beauty in each of the valuable pieces. They seem to go together effortlessly, like some of those puzzle pieces.
Yet, despite the beautiful connections made with the valuable pieces, we are incomplete. We are incomplete because we do not recognize the value in the broken parts we carry around. We have missing holes in what we see as the vision and picture of our life, but we cannot find the missing parts and pieces to complete the vision.
We are made whole when we choose to keep an open mind about the broken pieces we carry around. Just like the disregarded puzzle pieces discussed early on in the process, we disregard and ignore our broken parts. It is only when we layout all the pieces of ourselves in full view that we can see the connections between the broken and beautiful pieces.
Keeping all the brokenness buried does not serve to complete us. It simply serves to frustrate us, cause anxiousness, disappointment, and pain. Exactly what we sought to avoid by keeping the pieces in a buried bag inside.
As we begin to see the value in the broken pieces, as we make one connection at a time to completing ourselves, we look forward to exploring and searching out more of our broken pieces and parts. In fact, with each connection, we jump for joy, laugh, and begin to see how much easier it is to complete ourselves, and the puzzle in our life when we have a view of all the pieces.
We start to tell others of this profound discovery. Slowly, but surely, others around us, test out the theory. The testimony of one person becomes the roadmap for another. During the puzzle completion, it took guidance from others, sharing their strategies or insights, to help the person see differently and complete the puzzle. Before then, the person was stuck.
When we can see differently and can help another to see differently, we create a ripple effect. We create greater and more beautiful masterpieces in the world that are of value and purpose. Shifting one’s own sight to look deep inside and begin to cherish all parts of oneself is a gift to yourself. Helping someone to see that the broken pieces are valuable and have a purpose, is a gift to them. Giving them hope and strength to persevere is encouraging.
We are masterpieces in the making. We are outstandingly incomplete without all the pieces of ourselves. When we can accept and cherish all of our parts, we will quickly be able to complete ourselves and become the masterpieces we are.
We have been broken over the years in various ways for a purpose. We were to learn to love all our parts and pieces. We were to cherish the moments of pain and brokenness. The brokenness was to help us discover all that we are through the pieces and allow us to choose how we put the puzzle of our life together. The search and desire lie within to find all the parts, even the missing ones. When we realize there are no missing parts or pieces, but only ones simply not visible through the ruins of brokenness, this gives us hope of seeking our completion.
Think about it. We were created and born complete and whole. Over time, for some, they were chipped away at, shattered, smashed, or forgotten. With the brokenness and chips, we look out to others and see their portrayal of perfection. It seems as if they have all their pieces put together. Eventually, something chips and we must go in search of the wholeness. It does not matter whether we only have a few chips missing or big pieces tossed all over, the hunt is the same.
Life is all pieces and parts. It is how we look at the pieces and if we choose to embrace them that will determine how long it takes for us to complete our masterpiece. We have all the parts, we must look at them all, open our mind to their value, and start creating. Remember, it takes time to create a masterpiece but it is done with each moment, day and week. The sooner we complete this task, the greater our impact on others and our own fulfillment will be.
Go looking, seeking, unburying, and treasuring all your pieces. You are a masterpiece in the making! Share your joy with the world as you discover new pieces about yourself and make new connections. Spread hope and encouragement to others.
Written by Jacquie Fazekas