The child in me enjoys simple parables; stories with a hidden message within; a profound truth. Age and life experience brings suspicious thoughts, deep analyse, questioning of logic, and unbelief in some simple messages. Jesus was the master of telling stories. He shared His truth through parables, using elements familiar to his audience, the ocean, fish, coins, sheep harvest, seeds crops, local tribal tensions and people. He acknowledged that his message would be silly to some who had no understanding, their hearts could not comprehend the message.
I would like to retell an old Indian parable.
A water-carrier in India had two large pots each hung on the ends of a pole which he carried across his scrawny neck. One pot was cracked, while the other was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water. After each long trip from the stream back to his house, the cracked pot was only half full.
For several years the water bearer had only one and a half pots of water to use. The perfect pot was proud of his accomplishment, and would brag about its perfection. This made the poor cracked pot feel sad about its own imperfection and miserable that it was only able to accomplish half of what it was made to do.
One day, after years of what it perceived to be bitter failure, the cracked pot spoke to the water bearer. “I’m ashamed and want to apologise to you. I have been able to deliver only half my load because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house. Because of my flaws you have to do all this work without getting full value from your efforts,” the pot whispered.
The wise old water bearer replied, “Did you not notice that there are flowers only on your side of the path, but not on the other pot’s side? That’s because I have always known about your flaw, and so I planted flower seeds on your side of the path. Every day when we walk back from the river, you’ve watered my garden. All this time I have enjoyed the flowers you’ve watered. Without you being just the way you are, the world would be deprived of the beauty you’ve enabled.”
We may identify with that cracked pot; I certainly do. We each have our own unique flaws, but God makes no mistakes. We are exactly what He wants us to be. Let’s find our place in the jigsaw puzzle of society. When we find it, we will fit perfectly, and He will enable us to fulfil His purpose for our lives.
“Nothing you (or I) do for the Lord is ever useless” (1 Cor 15 v 58b)
“For I am the least…I am not worthy…But whatever I am now, it is all because God poured out his special favour on me – and not without results…Yet it was not I, but God who was working through me by His grace.” (I Cor 15 v9-10)
From one ‘cracked pot’ to another,