The Cracked Pot

Wednesday, April 7, 1999

2 Corinthians 4:7 – We have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellent power may be of God, and not of us. (KJV)

A water bearer in India had two large pots, each hung on the ends of a pole which he carried across his neck. One of the pots had a crack in it, and while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water at the end of the long walk from the stream to the master's house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.

Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments, but the poor cracked pot was ashamed and miserable that it was able to accomplish only half of what it had been made to do. After two years of what it perceived to be a bitter failure, it spoke to the water bearer one day by the stream.

"I am ashamed of myself, and I want to apologize to you."

"Why?" asked the bearer. "What are you ashamed of?"

"I have been able, for these past two years, to deliver only half my load because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your master's house. Because of my flaws, you have to do all of this work, and you don't get full value from your efforts."

Then the water bearer said the old cracked pot, "As we return to the master's house, I want you to notice the beautiful flowers along the path."

Indeed, as they went up the hill, the old cracked pot took notice of the sun warming the beautiful wild flowers on its side of the path, but there were no flowers at all on the other side.The bearer said to the pot, "Because I have always known about your flaw, and I took advantage of it, I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back from the stream, you've watered them. For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate my masters table. Without you being just the way you are, he would not have this beauty to grace his house."

(Author Unknown)

Prayer: Loving God, we are all cracked pots, so make each of us aware of our own unique flaws. In your caring hands, even our flaws can be used to grace life's table. In your love's economy, nothing goes to waste. May we have the grace to know that in our weakness you find our strength. Amen.

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About the author:

John Shearman
Oakville, Ontario, Canada

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