It started yesterday with a Facebook post referencing 9/11. That sadly familiar sense of dread started washing over me as I ran to turn on the news. Not again. Please Lord, not again. However, it had happened again. Senseless violence and death. Innocent lives lost and maimed in the name of terror, and the unsettling realization that it could happen anytime, anywhere. I struggled with the temptation to question God on this one, as I had before; the reasons for allowing the loss of innocent lives is something my human mind and heart cannot understand. But, as always, I remembered the puzzle.

I don’t know about you, but when we put together a puzzle (and we do still do this on occasion!), we prop the lid up where everyone can see it. It, of course, has the picture of the completed puzzle on it. If the puzzle involves a lot of sky and clouds, for instance, it would take you a sweet forever to put together without a picture because you wouldn’t be able to see which clouds are just tiny wisps and which were big and billowy. You wouldn’t know which were next to each other, and where the pieces connected. But if you look at the lid, you see the nuances of color and can begin to see where the tiny bits of cloud fit to form the picture.

In life, we can only see as far as the puzzle piece we’ve been given. We stand on it, looking at a partial view of a bigger picture that is nothing but fragments of the whole, which are often beyond our understanding. But God, well…

God is holding the lid to the puzzle box. God is privy to the WHOLE PICTURE.

He sees how things have to go in order for the final picture – the final victory – to be complete. And, while it might not make sense to us, or even has our sense of injustice in full uproar, I believe we can trust Him because He can see it all, and we can’t.

Since the entrance of sin and evil into the world, we’ve all been affected by each others’ depravity. We all know that sin doesn’t just affect the sinner, but spills out all over the innocent ones around him, weakening our society a little more with each instance. God allowed horrific violence and loss of the innocent life of His own Son so we’d have a way out from under the death sentence of our own sin. I believe He continues to allow things like this to occur because it always brings people to their knees. It draws people to Him, and folks, He’s our only hope. He won’t wait forever; there is eventually going to be an end to all this, but He loves us enough to want every single person with Him in eternity. He loves us enough to wait and wait and wait before He fits the last piece of the puzzle into place which banishes evil for good.

Bad stuff happens every day, and we mourn and weep for those affected. We band together, and the best side of humanity comes out, showing a selflessness sadly not seen much in the day-to-day. Wars are not won without bloodshed and loss of life…without some small victories for the other side. But the top of that puzzle box, shows a world free – FREE – from evil, once, and for all, and our pieces of it, yours and mine, fit together in ways we can’t imagine to make that a reality.

It’s in times like these when I’m thankful for a Trustworthy Puzzle Box Lid-Holder, who also happens to be the Alpha and Omega, beginning and the end…Who also happens to be the Ruler of the Universe…and the lover of our souls.


I am the Alpha and the Omega–the beginning and the end,” says the Lord God. “I am the one who is, who always was, and who is still to come–the Almighty One.” Revelation 1:8 NLT

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” Ephesians 6:12 NIV

But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power.” 2 Timothy 3:1-5 ESV

You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” Genesis 50:20 NIV

But the day of the Lord will come as unexpectedly as a thiefOn that day, he will set the heavens on fire, and the elements will melt away in the flames. But we are looking forward to the new heavens and new earth he has promised, a world filled with God’s righteousness.” 2 Peter 3:10-13 NLT

This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.” 1 John 4:10 NLT