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The Broken Pot
A water bearer in India had two large pots, each hung on an 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 Father's 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 your strength is made perfect.
(2 Corinthians 12:9)
Things are not always what they seem
Two traveling angels stopped to spend the night in the home of a wealthy family. The family was rude and refused to let the angels stay in the mansion's guest room. Instead the angels were given a small space in the cold basement. As they made their bed on the hard floor, the older angel saw a hole in the wall and repaired it. When the younger angel asked why, the older angel replied, "Things aren't always what they seem."
The next night the pair came to rest at the house of a very Poor, but very hospitable farmer and his wife. After sharing what little food they had the couple let the angels sleep in their bed where they could have a good night's rest. When the sun came up the next morning the angels found the farmer and his wife in tears. Their only cow, whose milk had been their sole income, lay dead in the field. The younger angel was infuriated and asked the older angel how could you have let this happen? The first man had everything, yet you helped him, he accused. The second family had little but was willing to share everything, and you let the cow die.
"Things aren't always what they seem," the older angel replied. "When we stayed in the basement of the mansion, I noticed there was gold stored in that hole in the wall. Since the owner was so obsessed with greed and unwilling to share his good fortune, I sealed the wall so he wouldn't find it." "Then last night as we slept in the farmers bed, the angel of death came for his wife. I gave him the cow instead.
Things aren't always what they seem."
Sometimes that is exactly what happens when things don't turn out the way they should. If you have faith, you just need to trust that every outcome is always to your advantage. You might not know it until some time later...
"Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me;" (John 14:6)
There was once a turntable bridge that spanned a large river. During most of the day the bridge sat with its length running up and down the river parallel with the banks, to let the ships pass freely on both sides. But at certain times each day, a train would come along, and the bridge would be turned sideways across the river, allowing the train to cross.
A switchman lived in a small shack, on one side of the river, where he operated the controls to turn the bridge and lock it into place as the train crossed. One evening, as the watchman was waiting for the last to come, he looked off into the distance, through the dimming twilight, and caught sight of the train lights. He stepped to the controls and waited until the train was within the prescribed distance before he was to turn the bridge. He turned the bridge into position, but to his horror, he found that the locking device did not work If the bridge was not locked securely into position, it would wobble back and forth at the ends when the train came into it, causing the train to jump the track and plunge into the river. This was a passenger train with many people aboard.
He left the bridge turned across the river and hurried across to the other side where there was a lever with which he could operate the lock manually. He could hear the rumble of the train now, and took hold of the lever and leaned backward to apply his weight to it, locking the bridge. He kept applying the pressure to keep the mechanism locked. Many lives depended on his strength.
Then, coming across the bridge from the direction of his control shack, came a sound that made his blood run cold! "Daddy, where are you?" His four year old son was crossing the bridge to look for him! His first impulse was to cry out to the child, "Run! Run!" But the train was too close; the tiny legs would never make it across the bridge in time. The man almost left the lever to run, snatch up his son, and carry him to safety; but he realized he could not get back to the lever in time. Either the people on the train or his little son must die.
He took just a moment to make his decision. The train sped swiftly and safely on its way, and no one was even aware of the tiny, broken body thrown mercilessly into the river below by the onrushing train. Nor were there any passengers who were aware of the pitiful figure of a sobbing man still clinging to the lever long after the train had passed. They did not see him walking home, slower than he had ever walked before, to tell his wife how he had crucified their son.
Now, if you can begin to comprehend the emotions that went through this man's heart, you can begin to understand the feelings of our Heavenly Father when He sacrificed His Son to bridge the gap between us and eternal life.
And how does He feel when we speed through life without a thought for what He has done for us by His Son, Jesus Christ? When was the last time you thanked Him for the sacrifice of His Son?
Jesus Christ died for us. "For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit." (I Peter 3:18)