Monday, January 18, 2016

cracked pots

Sometimes, we fall into the trap of thinking we have it all together. When life is easy, we think we know all the right answers. Like David, we say, 

"When things were quiet and life was easy,
I said in arrogance, 'Nothing can shake me.'
By Your grace, Eternal, I thought I was as strong as a mountain"
~Psalm 30:6-7a

From that lofty position, it's easy to look down on others and point out everything they are doing wrong, all the ways they are failing. After all, if I have it all together in my own power, doesn't that just make them weak if they can't do the same? The thing is, that's forgetting four key words from David's psalm: By Your grace, Eternal.

No matter what good I have in this life, it's through no strength or power of my own. Sometimes, though, I lose sight of that. It's in those times, I think, that God obscures my view of Him. Again like David, I say,

"But when You left my side and hid away,
I crumbled in fear."
~Psalm 30:7b

I don't have it all together--far from it, actually. I fail so often in so many ways, most of which I would hate to spell out here for anyone and everyone to see (but most of which the people close to me could probably list).

And yet, God loves me.

He in His grace and unending, unfathomable, unbelievable mercy still chooses to use me in the midst of my failings.

In fact, I think He prefers to use us in our failings. Just look at all the people He chose to use in the Scriptures--Moses was a murderer with a speech impediment, Rahab was a prostitute, David was an adulterer and murderer, Peter was hotheaded, Jacob (later named Israel) was a cheat, and Paul persecuted and killed the followers of Jesus (he was at the stoning of Stephen, the first martyr).

Because, you see, it's when He works out of the depths that His power is revealed in all its glory.

Not one of us has it all together, despite what people would have you believe on social media. We are all flawed people, but God embraces us flaws and all. He pours His spirit into us, letting it fill and cover all the flaws and spill out of all the cracks. Like Paul said,

"But this beautiful treasure
is contained in us--
cracked pots made of earth and clay--
so that the transcendent
character of this power
will be clearly seen as coming from God and not from us."
~II Corinthians 5:7

That's us--cracked pots.

But God chooses to pour Himself into us anyways. You see, no matter how much we leak He's more than enough to keep filling us.

And sometimes, it's the cracks that let Him flow out of us to other people.

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