I heard this story in the 1980s from a pastor friend. Actually it was his sermon one Sunday. One mark of a great sermon is its shelf-life. ~TD
One day in Kindergarten, Jenny was given a jigsaw puzzle to solve. On one side was a map of the world. On the other was a picture of her own smiling face. All the pieces were scattered. The other children were each given their own personalized puzzles.
The teacher told the kids their assignment was to put their world puzzle together. All the children started in with the fun and interest kids bring to so many things.
Soon all of them were slowing down, showing signs of frustration. Some were daydreaming, others hanging their heads down and pouting, others starting to squabble over perceived offenses by their classmates.
Then one of the daydreamers, Jenny, returned her focus to the puzzle. In just a few minutes she completed her challenge. The teacher was very pleased, and asked Jenny to come up and tell her friends how she solved the world puzzle.
Jenny, beaming with glee, said, “It was easy. I stopped trying to put the world together, and started putting my face together. When I got me right, the world got right!”
“Oh, that my people would listen to me!
Oh, that Israel would follow me,
walking in my paths!
How quickly I would then subdue their enemies!
How soon my hands would be upon their foes!
Those who hate the LORD would cringe before him;
they would be doomed forever.
But I would feed you with the finest wheat.
I would satisfy you with wild honey from the rock.”
– Psalm 81:13-16
“…if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
– 2 Chronicles 7:14
“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”
– Matthew 6:33
I believe when a person turns around to please God by accepting the Lordship of Jesus Christ, several things happen. That person begins to change towards the likeness of Christ. God Himself honors that turn and blesses that person’s life with increased well-being. Eternal life is granted to that person. All their sins are washed away. And there is a ripple effect emanating from that choice in everyone that person encounters, a quiet world-changing revolution.
“When I got me right,
the world got right!”