A jigsaw puzzle is never complete without all the pieces. I remember as a child, laying all the jigsaw puzzle pieces on a table and then I would try and figure out which piece goes where. It could be quite challenging sometimes especially with those 1000-2000 piece puzzles. I knew that the pieces could only fit in one way â it didn't matter what I thought â the design of the puzzle demands that the pieces only fit in that specific way.
As I was about to complete one jigsaw, I stared in horror at the table as I couldn't locate the one final piece. After spending unfruitful (what seemed like hours) searching for the missing piece, I stopped and stared disappointedly at the empty space in the puzzle. There was only one piece that would be able to fill that empty space and I knew that if it was never found, the puzzle would never be complete.
Life can sometimes be like that jigsaw puzzle. I think everyone at least once in their lifetime questions where they came from or why they are here or even what is the meaning of life. For some, these questions are easily answered, but for some others, these questions pose a difficult challenge.
Just like I searched to fit all the jigsaw puzzle pieces, I feel that there are those who can go through life trying to find the answer to these questions in all sorts of different places - in materialism, status or prestige and even within ourselves. Alas, only to come to the realisation that we are still at a dead end â there is still something missing.
I remember watching the Oprah Winfrey show when Opera revealed that she had a half sister she never knew about. I remember her sister mentioning that she always wanted to know who her birth mother was and once she had searched and knew, she felt connected and had a sense of wholeness.
As I watched the show, I recalled asking myself similar questions many years ago. I remembered feeling like there was something missing at that point in my life. A number of unfortunate events had happened to me which made me question the meaning of my life. I had tried and searched for the answer to a point where it all felt hopeless and empty and I began to sink deeper into myself.
I remember feeling like I was never good enough. I became a people pleaser, and wore a plastic smile, but though people saw me smile, deep down inside I knew I felt empty and unhappy.
Then later that year, I met some Christian missionaries. I remember receiving a phone call from them, after we had met for the first time, and they told me that they needed to speak to me. They had taken one look at me and immediately noticed that there was something wrong. My smile didn't hide the true feelings I had.
The very next day I met with them, and they told me of the love that is found in Christ Jesus â that day, I gave my life to Christ.
I believe God created mankind for a plan and purpose. In Genesis 3, we are told of how man disobeyed God, and as a result man was banished from the Garden of Eden. In Romans 3 verse 23 it states: "We have all sinned and fall short of the glory of God". The obvious question therefore How then is that relationship with God restored, if our nature is sinful?
Thankfully, the Scriptures tell me it is by God's Grace that my relationship with God was restored through his only Son, Christ Jesus, who died in our place for all our sins.
As I reflected on what Oprah's sister said, it made me wonder â could it be that just as a child yearns to know who their parents are, we all have a yearning in our hearts for a relationship with our creator and heavenly father â God?
For me, that empty space (that men and women attempt to fill with the things of this world), can only be filled by the one who created me. By the one who created that relationship in the first place and knows me inside and out? The answer for me â the missing piece - was found in Christ Jesus?
I remember the joy, peace, hope and the sense of completeness I felt when I gave my life to Christ. I know now that the only thing that could have filled my empty space was God.
Kandima Awendila was born in Mozambique and lives and works as an IT Service Desk Engineer on the Gold Coast.
Kandima Awendila's archive of articles may be viewed at www.pressserviceinternational.org/kandima-awendila.html