Saturday, April 19, 2008

Just a Bunch of Clangin' Clay Pots

I hope you all go to read the these two posts: Christian Women and Depression (written by Tami Rutledge) and it's Part 2 (which I wrote with excepts from "Desiring God" included in blue text).

In relation to Part 2 I read this morning some words from 2 Cor. 4:7-18
So in case you read that and find inability in yourself thinking "how can I do that practically?" here are some encouraging words from Paul:
"But we have this treasure in earthen vessels (the treasure of the glory of God through Christ), so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves;
we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing;
persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed;
always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body.
For we who live are constantly being delivered over to death for Jesus' sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.
So death works in us, but life in you.
But having the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, 'I BELIEVED, THEREFORE I SPOKE', we also believe, therefore we also speak, knowing that He who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and will present us with you.
for all things are for your sakes, so that the grace which is spreading to more and more people may cause the giving of thanks to abound to the glory of God.
Therefore we do not loose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day.
for momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison,
while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal."

These are certainly words for the depressed, discouraged, and frustrated. They speak encouragement of an on going work that God is doing in us. They speak of that large lens of perspective. I hope they add something for those of you who read. They spoke to me and I only come to share.

I think if I ever were to have another blog it would be called "The Clangin' of a Clay Pot".
Anything I bring here to this blog is from a Clay Pot. It's amazing to me that God has chosen to house his very glory in these pots. Yet, the very fact that he does allows him to shine all the more because there is no beauty in us, yet what we can pour out is the very treasure of heaven. The more I understand this, the more I forget myself. Perhaps instead of wearing a cross necklace, we should all go out and get one that bears a clay pot. (no, there is nothing wrong with a cross, that's not what I'm sayin' here people:) The Lord is really showing me I need to more and more back off trying to be a be a shiny vessel and just be happy being a pot. The more unastounding (did I just make up another word?) I am, the more amazing He becomes.


Anonymous said...

I love this clay pot story... I know you will too!

The Cracked Pot
A water bearer in India had two large pots, each hung on each end 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 masters house, the cracked pot arrived only half full. For a full two years this went on daily, with the bearer delivering only one and a half pots full of water in his masters house.

Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments, perfect to the end for which it was made. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, 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 masters house. Because of my flaws, you have to do all of this work, and you don't get full value from your efforts." The pot said.

The water bearer felt sorry for the old cracked pot, and in his compassion he said, "As we return to the masters 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 the side of the path, and this cheered it some. But at the end of the trail, it still felt bad because it had leaked out half its load, and so again the Pot apologized to the bearer for its failure.

The bearer said to the pot, "Did you notice that there were flowers only on your side of your path, but not on the other pots side? That's 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."

Each of us has our own unique flaws. We re all cracked pots. But if we will allow it, the Lord will use our flaws to grace His Fathers table. In Gods great economy, nothing goes to waste. Don't be afraid of your flaws. Acknowledge them, and you too can be the cause of beauty. Know that in our weakness we find our strength.

What a wonderful God we serve...


Alicia said...

"In Gods great economy, nothing goes to waste."
I think that was the most comforting of the whole story.
I just returned from ....(with my three kids, no hubby) the farmers market, Trader Joes, Food For Less, and Walmart (with a dollar cheese burger thrown in between) and in my "whew!"thoughts I came here to read your story.
Forgive me, but I could not help it, every time my brain saw "Cracked pot" it read it "crack-pot".
Oh, dear, I think I could use a nap or a good laugh one or the other!
Seriously (and i suck in my cheeks to stop grinning:) it was a beautiful story.
btw- I only tell the my complete reaction because I think you will find it amuseing and not find me unappreciative of your sharing.:)

tricia w. said...

I love that story. I love that God uses even our weaknesses. thanks for the story Tami.

Anonymous said...

Alicia, that is so funny because, The title I have it saved under in My Documents... is CRACK-POTS

I always think of it that way too!

Such a laugh. I guess we crack-pots think alike!

Thanks Tricia, I love it too... I feel like I am a leaky pot. And the thing I wonder is, when I leak, what flows out of me. I want to be so saturated in the word that the Word flows from me. And that I water those I am around.

Well I am off for the next couple days. We are doing a mini Perspective Retreat for a few couples tomorrow in the afternoon and evening!

Praise God from whom all blessing flow!

From one Crack-Pot to another!