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One Piece at a Time… Object Lesson on God’s Plan for our Lives


Have you ever skipped ahead to the end of a book just to see how it ends? Do you often wonder what God could possibly have in mind when certain things happen? This lesson provides a quick challenge to illustrate our limited view and God’s big picture. Younger children may not be too occupied with the future, and may not even grasp the more abstract concepts of this lesson; however, young and old alike can enjoy the puzzle element and appreciate the overarching scope of the message: God knows all things and helps us handle life one thing at a time.

Materials: 2 jigsaw puzzles (age appropriate)

Activity: Have children put together a jigsaw puzzle. Begin by giving the children a simple, age-appropriate puzzle with a box or picture available to see what they are putting together. Work as a family to complete the puzzle.

Next, explain you will be putting together another puzzle. This time, you will not be able to see the picture of  what the puzzle is going to be. They will also only receive the pieces one or two at a time. Hand family members the puzzle piece by piece and allow time to put it together. Discuss the project: What makes it frustrating to put the puzzle together? Is it easier to have the picture in front of you?

Significance and message: For older kids, brainstorm (and then explain, for older and younger) how this activity might relate to our lives. Read and examine a few verses:

  • Ecclesiastes 7:14 (God controls and creates all things, so just appreciate what you )
  • Jeremiah 29:11 (God has a great plan for your life, even if you cannot see it right )
  • Proverbs 19:21 (We can have an idea in mind, but God ultimately orchestrates events.)
  • Matthew 6:25-27 (Worry about just one day at a time, because God will take care of you.)

God knows what the big picture is for our lives. He holds the end result and can see the box with the image on it. Yet He only gives us the puzzle a piece at a time. He knows what we can handle and does not want to overwhelm us, so He guides us through as we figure out how everything fits and falls into place. When we truly trust the puzzle designer and place our lives in His hands, we can hold hope that in the end things will work, even if not as we expect. The best we can do is live one day at a time and let God be in control.