The Master Puzzle Maker

Will, Mikos, Maddie, and Jenny

Hebrews 3:4 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

  Every house is founded by someone, but the founder of all is God.

The Gift

The week started with a late lunch date with Mike. We had reservations at our favorite restaurant in Newport Beach. On our way there, Mikos, our son, texted us: “Are you at the restaurant yet?” I looked over at Mike and asked, “Should we invite him?” Mike answered with a quick ,”No!” “Why don’t you want him to join us?” I asked. Mike answered, “Can’t we just have a quiet lunch?” With that, I left the subject matter alone and texted Mikos a simple “Yes.” We were well into the meal when I noticed Mikos walking in. I looked over at Mikos while announcing, “Mikos is here.” Mike looked over and said “Hey, what are you doing here?” As usual Mikos eased into our conversation. The subject matter was marriage and how important it was for couples to stay together. Then Mike reached into his pocket and pulled out a small Christmas bag. “I need to give this special lady a gift,” he said, while handing me the bag. I was totally caught off guard and almost felt like looking around for “this special lady.” Our 48th wedding anniversary is not until the 25th of January. But it was Mikos who was even more surprised; the uninvited guest was confused. “Dad, did you have Mom’s rings polished? What is this?” I explained to our son that Mike had given me a new ring as an anniversary  gift. Poor Mike! He had to share the special moment with our son.

The Dad’s Role

It was God’s plan for our son to witness this special moment. Mike is that guy who almost always does everything right. The Bible speaks about the role men are to play in a family. They are to be the spiritual leaders, protectors, and providers for the family. When men take their proper role, there is a balance in the family.

Maddie and Mike

Many times, it’s the women who have a stronger walk with the Lord. When the Lord called me to serve, it was not that easy. Mike was not that accommodating; he questioned my direction and at times made it difficult for me to grow as a Christian. One thing that Mike was consistent about was never stopping me from going on missionary trips. He understood that the work was for the Lord, and he would never get in the way of that. He has always supported my mission work financially as well as spiritually. Through the years, both Mike and I has grown to understand that our calling is different. We are equally yoked and respect the difference in our individual call.

Like Father, Like Son

The bear image
My power walks

We have traveled to Mammoth Lakes with Mikos and his family for the past three years. Mikos and his clan are skiers, as is Mike. Not me! I gave up the sport years ago because I never got past the beginner stages.

This year, the weather was perfect for long walks. The surrounding snow-covered mountains reminded me of God’s creation. Sometimes I’m overwhelmed with its beauty.  I enjoy the quiet walks and the sweet sound when a light breeze rustles the trees.  This is a place where the world is shut out for a fleeting moment. I may no longer ski, but I certainly enjoy these trips.

Mikos has followed in the footsteps of his father. Because of his demanding job with its long hours, he and his wife Jenny bring balance to their busy schedules. On these trips, every waking moment is about their family, and Mikos makes sure that they are all well cared for. With the way of the world and, especially all the challenges in public schools, parents must be a united front. He and Jenny are wonderful parents.

Proverbs 4:1-4 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Hear, O children, a father’s instruction,  be attentive, that you may gain understanding Yes, excellent advice I give you; my teaching do not forsake.When I was my father’s child, tender, the darling of my mother,He taught me and said to me: “Let your heart hold fast my words: keep my commands, and live!

The puzzle makers: Maddie, Will, Jenny and Mikos
Every piece in place

The Puzzle

A 1,000-piece puzzle takes work, and just like the matters of life there is order. The first rule in the puzzler’s mind is to secure all the flat edges. Once all the borders are in place, you work with the rest of the pieces. Mikos, Jenny, Maddie and Will worked on putting the pieces together. This simple project brings this family closer together. The late-night talks and singing help achieve the goal of unplanned unity. The puzzle of life all comes into sync; once it’s put together, the puzzlers share in the accomplishment of a job completed. If every piece is accounted for, all is well.

The Master Puzzle Maker

In the same way, the Shepherd cannot rest until all His sheep are accounted for. We are all part of God’s puzzle, cut up in different shapes, with different colors and sizes. But when we are brought together, with every piece of the puzzle in place, you can no longer see the difference because every odd shape takes its place in the puzzle of life. No piece stands out more than any other. The Master Puzzle Maker sees that we are all accounted for.

Maddie, Jenny, and me
The photo shoot

John 10:14-15 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

14 I am the good shepherd, and I know mine and mine know me, 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I will lay down my life for the sheep.

My Prayer: Dear Lord, always protect my children and grandchildren. I pray that they will serve You, and know that You will always be there to direct their paths. When they go astray, Lord, lead them back into the right direction. Guide them to make good choices and to be humble and loving. Amen

 

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