This story – below – has a profound message for Christians and for life in the church (in a church, a home church, a group or a band of brothers).
A man had two large pots, which he carried. One of the pots had a crack in it while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water to the village/city. At the end of the long walk from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.
For a full two years this went on daily, with the man bringing home only one and a half pots of water.
Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it could only do half of what it had been made to do.
After 2 years of what it perceived to be bitter failure, it spoke to the man one day by the stream "I am ashamed of myself, because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house."
The old man smiled, "Did you notice that there are flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot's side? Your job is to water the plants, the other pot has a different job.
Can you see? The old man was deliberately carrying two different kinds of pots. They each had a different job!
The one pot had a job of delivering a lot of water to the village, the other had a different job of watering the flowers along the walkway. Both are "cool" jobs. The cracked pot thought it was spilling, but the old man knew that the pot's job was to water.
You may think you are not doing some job well, but you may not realise that you're doing another different job in God's Kingdom very well. You only need to find your place in the church and be all you can be. You don't need to be someone else, just be you. 😀
Not everyone is a TV evangelist. Not everyone is called to stand up before others. Jesus' mom was called to be… a mom. Should she have had low self esteem because she wasn't a travelling evangelist? No. She was called to be a mom – and evidently she did it well.
The message to me – accept myself as I am. Embrace my life! Be me. Don't try be someone else. Don't want to be someone else. Don't envy the other pots with different jobs. Just be me.
I only feel "less" when I compare myself to other supposedly "better" pots. If I stop comparing myself and accept myself, see the value I have in me… then my life appears to be wonderful and I am contributing something. Then I can begin to explore my world and enjoy my life and grow into the best me that I can be.
The Message bible puts it so well – Romans 8:14-16:
God's Spirit beckons. There are things to do and places to go! This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It's adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike "What's next, Papa?" God's Spirit touches our spirits and confirms who we really are. We know who he is, and we know who we are: Father and children.
You may think you don't have worth. You may be going through the very hardest of times. You may think other's are more valuable. Remember this story.
Even though you don't see the value you are contributing to others around you… you might be contributing great value to the people around you.
What you see as a crack in your design may, might actually be a wonderful and attractive feature. The old man walking with you and encouraging you knows your design, He knows you. He loves you. 🙂