Posted by: Matt Rice | 02/26/2008

“I know exactly what to do Dad.”

Saturday was a great day with my kids. We are moving to NW Cary and my wife – God Bless her – is working a little more so we can live there and plant a church. This affords me the honor of being the Lone Ranger Dad every 4th weekend. This past weekend was the first in this new arrangement. 

 I have learned that with a 5 year old boy you have to ration the TV hours. Andrew really likes to watch TV and Dana does a great job of policing this activity. To use her words, “Too much TV will cause your brain to get mushy.” So, after I let Andrew have his fill of Saturday cartoons, I turned the TV off and gathered the 3 oldest ones together to assemble a 24 piece floor puzzle  The puzzle was a circus puzzle and quite complicated.

Andrew and Mollie did a great job of helping and Luke the 2 year old did a great job of distracting….I could not say at the time, “At least we are all together” because I was not feeling that Christ-like with Luke. I have repented of my thoughts and am grateful Luke was there and not taking a nap……mostly. 

Things were going great. We had 23 pieces in place. But there was a problem…the puzzle had 24 pieces. We looked for the missing piece and could not find it anywhere. Just then Andrew jumped up and announced in typical Rice loudness, “I know exactly what to do Dad” as he headed into the bathroom. I thought to myself, when you gotta go you gotta go.  He came back and asked, “Guess what I did Dad?” I hesitantly asked, “What?” He said, “I prayed and asked Jesus to help us find the puzzle piece.” I was caught off guard and praised his action. We left the puzzle on the floor and went outside to play hoping the piece would show up.

 Later that night, I was looking into the couch for something and guess what I found…..lent, a couple of cheerios, an animal cracker, a play watch, our old phone and PIECE #24!!! The puzzle was complete, Andrew’s prayer was answered, and a big lesson learned.God cares about every detail of our lives. Many times we rush to him to lift up the big requests like a move, a job change, a sickness, or salvation of a friend but fail to bring the “missing puzzle pieces” to him. God taught Andrew the importance of prayer. When I showed him that piece he was so excited. It was a big deal to him. What you are going through in your life today is a big deal to God. Don’t rush to Him with some of your requests, but come to him with them all. 

I encourage you today to come to Christ with all your praise and all of your requests. Just be sure you include those “puzzle pieces.” What a great lesson…..for a 36 year old pastor….and his son.



  1. Hi Matt. I am the friend of Tricia Devries—you met my husband Mike a few weeks ago(he had dinner with your family at your church). Tricia showed me your website so I kept it in my favorites and just read your most recent posting. And I had to tell you how awesome it was to read that. I had just finished praying and asking God to show me how to pray His way. Because in my head it feels selfish to pray for certain things, for example, a low interest rate because we are buying a house, for the house I am in now to sell quickly and for the asking price. However I know God wants to give us the desires of our heart but it is hard for me to pray for those things. So, anyway I had basically just cried out to God to show me how He wants me to pray and then I read your blog! There is no question in my mind that God answered my prayer! So thank you. And I guess you never thought by writing that you could be answering a strangers prayers or then again maybe you did! Thanks again. Melissa Hammer

  2. Hi Matt,

    I really enjoy your style of writing. I’m right there with ya when you write. I think it’s awesome how you find the Lord in everyday life. That’s my personal goal too. I have a cool puzzle story too one day I’ll have to share with you. It involves a potato chip puzzle, remind me next time I see you.

    Lord bless you and all the Rice family.

    On the field,


  3. Hey Matt,

    Great reading your stuff and catching up with you! Keep it up.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: