All the Parts and Pieces

Perhaps you’ve watched compilation virtual videos (I’m sure there’s a specific name for this, but that’s what I’m going with) during this time of social isolation, where people sing or play instruments at their homes. The video combines all the parts and pieces and shows everyone singing/playing together on the screen at one time. Pretty amazing.

Each separate part is essential to create a complete picture. By themselves, the voice or instrument is only a small piece of many which combines to create a whole.

As I considered this, I thought of all the tiny parts and pieces of our days, our lives, which look insignificant or minor in the grand scheme of things. However, when we allow some distance between those events and look over the past, we can see how God used those small parts and pieces to bring us to where we are today. In the process, creating a masterpiece which required every one of those parts.

Even the hard, wish it never happened thank you very much, parts.

At the end of the book of Genesis we read the story of Joseph. An excellent example of a life full of parts and pieces which looked anything but good. Yet, through God’s sovereignty and grace, turned out better than imagined. For what man planned for evil, God used for good.

Yeah. There are parts and pieces in my life I shook my head at, wondered about how any good could possibly come from then, and asked God what the deal was. If I really take the time and look back over these places, I see how each separate part was essential to create a complete picture. Much like a virtual choir. Or a teenager sold into slavery by his older brothers and later rose to second in command in Egypt.

How do you view all the varied parts and pieces of your life? As random events which mean little in the grand scheme of things or as part of a masterpiece being created by a sovereign God?

“God meant it unto good” — O blest assurance,
Falling like sunshine all across life’s way,
Touching with Heaven’s gold, earth’s darkest storm clouds,
Bringing fresh peace and comfort day by day.

‘Twas not by chance the hands of faithless brothers
Sold Joseph captive to a foreign land;
Nor was it chance that, after years of suffering,
Brought him before the Pharaoh’s throne to stand.

One Eye-all-seeing saw the need of thousands,
And planned to meet it through that one lone soul;
And through the weary days of prison bondage
Was working toward the great and glorious goal.

As yet the end was hidden from the captive,
The iron entered even to his soul;
His eye could scan the present path of sorrow,
Not yet his gaze might rest up in the whole.

Faith failed not through those long, dark days of waiting,
His trust in God was reimbursed at last,
The moments came when God led forth His servant,
To comfort many, all his sufferings past.

“It was not you but God, that led me to here,”
Witnessed triumphant faith in later days;
“God meant it unto good,” no other reason
Mingled their discord with his song of praise.

“God means it unto good” for you, beloved,
The God of Joseph is the same today;
His love permits afflictions, strange and bitter,
His hand is guiding through the unknown way.

Your Lord, who sees the end from the beginning,
Has purposes for you of love untold,
Then place your hand in His and follow fearless,
Till you the riches of His grace behold.

Then, when you stand firm in the Home of glory,
And all life’s paths lie open to your gaze,
Your eyes will SEE the hand that you’re now trusting,
And magnify His love through endless days.

Freda Hanbury Allen

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

So we are convinced that every detail of our lives is continually woven together to fit into God’s perfect plan of bringing good into our lives, for we are his lovers who have been called to fulfill his designed purpose. Romans 8:28 (TPT)

You can find my August Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Guest Post – I Am Thomas

Today’s guest post, I Am Thomas, written by Dave Peever first appeared on Live 4 Him.

I am Thomas.

This is not my normal way of introducing myself. As I said in my blog post “I Am Mary”, I have never introduced myself by saying, “I am Mary” and because it may come up after today’s post, I want to assure you that I have never introduced myself by saying, “I am Thomas” until today. To clear up any misunderstandings that may come from this introduction; my name is Dave and I have no intention of going by the name Thomas. However I must, if I intend to introduce myself fully, use the words, I am Thomas.

I am a disciple of Jesus the Christ.                                                                         

I follow His teachings although sometimes I fail to live them out. I seek to know more and desire to spend every possible moment that I can hearing Him speak. I have been known to ask Him for directions as often I am lost, unable to understand where I am being led; “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?” John 14:5 (NIV). I am Thomas.

I have no fear of dying, as a matter of fact it may be my default.

There are those days when things seem hopeless, when everything is crashing down and I lose my will to go on. I have no problem following Jesus even if it means death. There are even times when an end to this life is my preferred outcome, my escape from the pain of living in a sinful world; “Let us also go, that we may die with Him.” John 11:16 (NIV). I am Thomas.

People know very little about me.

I have no fame to speak of, I am just a name lumped in with other names of those who follow Christ. I may make a shorter list of those whose call from God was/is also their vocation, still I am no more than a guy who does church stuff for a living. There are other big names who do the same and receive the praise of others. They are well known and will most likely be long after they die. They have had their writing published, read and implemented by many other Christ followers, but me, although I am one of them, I labour in obscurity. I am Thomas.

I have witnessed the miraculous move of God.

I have been present when prayers have been answered. I have seen people healed. I have heard testimony given about the unmistakable intervention of God. I am in awe of what He can do, has done and anticipate what He will do. What I haven’t heard I have read about. Most importantly I have experienced Him enough to know that I can count on Him to do what He promises even though it seems to be impossible. I am Thomas.

Still, I have my times of doubt.

I might have seen it before, I might have heard about it, I might have read about it, but sometimes I still doubt. I need to see for myself. Just because it worked out before doesn’t mean it will work out this time. Just because it came true for others doesn’t mean it will come true for me. My closest friends, my brothers and sisters in Christ may tell me what they experienced, what they saw; if it affects them I believe it but if it affects me I need proof. I am Thomas.

I am Thomas, it is tough for me to have faith sometimes.

And we know [I know] that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28 (NIV). I know that “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” Deuteronomy 31:8 (NIV). I know these promises and many, many more apply to all believers but sometimes I wonder if they apply to me. Sometimes I doubt – I am Thomas.

I am Thomas, if I don’t see it happening I begin to doubt.

You can tell me God is faithful. You can show me the outcome of His faithfulness. You can encourage me with His promises. You can implore me to be patient. In the end if I can’t see it happening, if I can’t touch it or experience it firsthand, I doubt. I am Thomas.

…“Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.” John 20:25b (NIV)

I am the Thomas but I want to be more.

Then Jesus told him [Thomas], “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” John 20:29 (NIV)

I will never fault Thomas for doubting because I do it all the time. I am Thomas but I would like to believe that Thomas learned to believe without seeing, I would like to believe I will learn to do the same.

Who is Dave Peever? I am a follower of Jesus the Christ. My specific call is to creatively present various aspects of life as a Christ follower and as a member of a collective of Christ followers I use my background as an actor, director and playwright/writer as well as my music, preaching and leadership skills to assist churches in transition (between pastors) with their desire to be more effective.

I have been married for 31 years. We have 3 sons and 4 grandchildren all who currently reside in central Ontario Canada. I have been in ministry for 22 years.

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

I wish you well.

Sandy

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