I was talking to my mom today about how we don't always see the results of our ministry, or the ways we affect other peoples lives. It made me think of the tapestry illustrations. Maybe you've heard it, maybe you haven't. Either way, it's always good to be reminded that despite the stress and "fruitlessness" you may see, there is fruit from your labor in the bigger picture.
This is the part of life that you see. This little jumbled up mess that doesn't seem to make a whole lot of sense a lot of the time; yet if you stare at it long enough with a good attitude, you can find beauty despite chaos of it. In fact, since this picture represents all you have the chance to see in life, there's a chance you might not even realize that it looks like a jumbled mess. More power to you.
Then we've got the whole picture. It's still the backside of the real thing, because honestly, only God sees the real thing exactly as it is. Looking at this, you can at least see the whole thing, but it's still blurry and rough. Parts of it still don't make sense. Few if any get to see this though, because as I said earlier, we generally only get to see our small corner of the universe and the lives within.
Then there is God's view. Full of the finished color, detailed in every respect, with perfect sense. He sees everything, every life and they way they are intertwined. We see the mess, He sees the picture. The big picture. All of it.
While we're at the bottom struggling to keep going, He's up at the top weaving our lives into His gorgeous tapestry. So when life is looking down, and you're feeling like there isn't much point in your life, or that everything's going wrong, just remember that God isn't finished yet -- and you're a part of a larger, greater picture.