Welcome I am such a nerd! Or, I act a lot older than I actually am. Probably, a little bit of both, but either way I love to work jigsaw puzzles. I am currently working a doozy and today I’m going to share a little of my spiritual thinking I had while working this puzzle. Today’s recipe is a fun Halloween candy bark that you don’t need to put back together, but break apart to enjoy its yumminess. Thank you for joining me today. Note–I may receive small compensation from advertisers and affiliate links seen on this blog. For further information, please see my terms and disclosure page.
Food For Thought Yes, I do love puzzles. I mostly like to do serene landscape puzzles of the thousand-piece variety. But I also have three puzzles of stadiums of favorite sports teams and have recently started working wildlife puzzles. I enjoy puzzles because they are a distraction from my mental focus when I’m anxious, upset, or depressed. It’s a stress-reliever and pick-me-up. I am so focused on looking for the next matching piece that I don’t think about the long list of things that are currently bugging me. The puzzle I started this past week is so challenging! The main picture is of a wolf pack family but is supplemented with other wildlife such as bears, fox, owls, birds and other wild animals. The novelty is that it is cut in a silhouette of a wolf body. This intrigued me, but I had no idea that the puzzle would be cut so oddly. There are curves where edge pieces are supposed to go and many straight-edge pieces on the interior of the puzzle. The whole idea of getting the edge put together first went out the window very quickly. And there’s fur everywhere! Difficult, to say the least, but certainly not impossible. If I were given the pile of pieces with no direction, I’d be lost. But I have a great tool at my disposal…the puzzle box lid!
I have barely started this puzzle, but I have reached for that lid so many times already, trying to make some sense of different fur patterns, where the different animals are located in relation to one another, and the miniscule color differences that give me a “lead.” I use this lid as a tool to see how these pieces fit together to form the whole picture. It’s nice to have that lid to reach for and look at the whole picture at once, to know that all of these crazy shapes and colors will fit together to make a beautiful completed picture. Then I had this thought: how wonderful it must be for God to hold the puzzle box of the universe. He can look at this “lid,” which is His plan, and see how everything fits together. He knows exactly how it all needs to come together, even when it feels like random chaos to us. Circumstances in my life may seem to have no logical place to fit or link other parts together, but God knows how my whole life picture is going to come together. There are events taking place in our world right now and I can see no benefit from their existence, yet I trust in God’s power that He can take this mixed-up pile of random events and turn it into a completely beautiful work of art. I wish I could take a look at God’s puzzle box lid and make some sense of everything I’m dealing with right now, what we’re all experiencing, and how it all comes together. I wish I could have a glimpse at His finished work of art and know with certainty that everything turns out okay, that all this mess becomes a great accomplishment. Wouldn’t we all like that? If we could just get a little peak at that grand puzzle box lid, we would have comfort and peace for things yet to come.
Or would we? I do believe there is a master plan of God and I believe that certain circumstances happen in our lives for a reason. However, a look into our future may not hold the key to our happiness or leave us free from worry. As much as I think I desperately need to know that my life is going to “turn out all right,” I’m not sure I could handle the privilege of getting to see everything that’s going to take place in my lifetime. We know there are going to be times of hurt, sadness, mourning, and struggle. It’s hard enough going through those times when they happen, would I really want to know about them ahead of time, to have the sense of dread for things to come. Also, and I’ve mentioned this before, having faith is a key component to our spiritual walk with God. When events of life are guaranteed, there is no need for faith, and without faith, we find ourselves without a God and Savior. I may need my physical puzzle box lid so I can complete my current jigsaw project, but more importantly I need trust and faith that God knows what He’s doing when He makes these crazy pieces of our life, knowing that He will construct something beautiful out of the chaos.
Today’s Scripture When I think about God holding a “puzzle box lid,” I’m thinking of how God is all-knowing and ever-seeing. I am trusting that events, both good and bad, happen in this life according to His great and divine plan. One of the passages in scripture that make me think of how God is all-knowing of us, our lives, actions, and thoughts, is in Psalm 139. We are also reminded in verse 6 that this knowledge is too wonderful and lofty for our own comprehension. I am going to share part of this passage with you today.
Psalm 139:1-16 “O Lord, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord. You hem me in–behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain. Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. If I say, Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me, even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you. For you created my inmost being, you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made, your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body, all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of the came to be.”
Today’s Prayer I have spent a lot of time praying for trust in His plan over the past 10 months, or so. Maybe you need this prayer today, as well.
My Dear Heavenly Father, I have been praying for understanding and trust that the events of this life have meaning and purpose, even when they are painful or confusing. I pray that I will continue to praise You, even when I lack understanding of Your big picture, always knowing that Your plan is far better than anything I could come up with on my own. God, I know these words are easy to speak or write, but the actions of faith are much harder to carry out. I believe You can walk with me, and others as well, so that our journey can be made a little bit easier even when we can’t see the beautiful picture in the end. I pray this in Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Today’s Recipe When I’m working a puzzle, of course the goal is to get all of the pieces together and make something pretty. What if we have something pretty and want to break it apart? Sound strange? Well that’s exactly what we get to do with candy bark! I love candy bark recipes. They are fast, easy, and can use up odds and ends in your baking cabinet. Since it is now officially October, I have a recipe for some cute Halloween Oreo Candy Bark. If you are inspired to make some other candy barks, you can check out my Pinterest boards for Fall, Christmas, or Candy. Oh, and I’m going to make my side-note here about Halloween. The word Halloween comes form an old Scottish term which means “All Hallow’s Eve” since Halloween lands on the day before All Saint’s (Hallow’s) Day, a Christian holiday (source-Bing search engine: history of Halloween.) Yes, Halloween was connected to a (gasp) Christian holiday. Our household loves God and is faithful to His instruction, and we also celebrate the seasons and holidays, like Halloween, in cute and fun fashion. We do not embrace the customs of evil, terror, scary, gory, or other modern components of this “pagan” holiday. At our house, it’s just another reason to eat yummy food and get a little silly.
Halloween Oreo Candy Bark (inspired by Pumpkin ‘n Spice)
- 2 11-oz pkgs Ghiradelli white chocolate chips
- 20-25 coarsely crushed Halloween Oreos (I like to do this in a zip-top bag with a rolling pin)
- 1 cup candy corn
- Assorted Halloween sprinkles
- Line a large baking sheet with wax paper. Place 3/4 of crushed Oreos and the candy corn on the wax paper. Place chocolate chips in large glass bowl and heat in microwave for minute. Remove bowl and stir. Continue to heat in microwave on 30-second intervals until melted, stirring frequently. Pour melted chocolate over Oreos and candy. Add sprinkles and remaining cookies, pressing down with rubber spatula so that everything gets pressed into the chocolate. Place pan in refrigerator for one hour. Remove from refrigerator and break into pieces. I like to store mine in plastic containers with lids in the refrigerator so the pieces don’t get too sticky.
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