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 master's 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 to his master's 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 is 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 master's 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 master's 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 it 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 the path, but not on the other pot's 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 master's 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 God's great economy, nothing goes to waste.

So as we seek ways to minister together,
and as God calls you to the tasks He has appointed for you,
don't be afraid of your flaws.

Acknowledge them, and allow Him to take advantage of them,
and you too, can be the cause of beauty in His pathway.

Go out boldly, knowing that in our weakness we find His strength,
and that In Him every one of God's promises is a Yes."

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