I am pretty picky about food. Not necessarily what the food is, but how it’s prepared. I do not like any sort of butter substitute. Butter is the real deal. If it’s not butter, I can tell. It just doesn’t taste right. We, as human beings, have gotten very good at imitation ourselves. How are you? “Oh, I’m great! How are you?” No you’re not! You just didn’t want to get into a conversation with someone who, in your opinion, probably doesn’t care anyway. If we all start thinking and acting this way, pretty soon we’ll just be equivalent to a human “substitute”. Human beings have feelings. We deal with emotions. I think people are looking for realness more than ever. In a world where everything seems to be fake, somebody’s got to get real!
Let’s be there for one another and really care. Don’t just pretend. Ok. So the world beats us up. We’ve all got flaws. We’re people. But don’t let those “cracks” in your vessel stop you from ministering to others. These cracks that we think need to be hidden flaws turn out to be of vital use in the real world. If it weren’t for the cracks, things wouldn’t spill out. There’s vulnerability in brokenness. There’s a real story there. People need to hear your story. As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend (Proverbs 27:17 NLT). Let your scars glorify Jesus.
The world looks at cracks in the vessel as less valuable. God sees an opportunity for a relationship to form with Him and others. He doesn’t see things the way we do. To all who mourn in Israel, he will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the Lord has planted for his own glory (Isaiah 61:3 NLT). The trials of life we’ve gone through are going to turn into our testimony. Our testimony is going to minister to someone and make us more firmly rooted in God’s goodness. It will bring hope to a desperate world. God is no respecter of people. What He will do for you, He’ll do for someone else.
A crack in a vessel is where a lot of pressure has been applied. It may be the area where the pot is the weakest but that is exactly where God shines the strongest. Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. (2 Corinthians 12:9 NLT) The writer here, Paul, understood the way of the Lord. He is conveying to us today that where he was “less than”, God was more than enough! God was showing him and us that the very things we want to hide will be the very areas that He will show off like a trophy to the world. In spite of “blank”, Jesus is always triumphant! That’s exactly how He gets the glory. It’s all about what He can do with our brokenness. It’s not about trying to hide it. We’re all broken in some way.
So, a willingness to expose yourself as a real human being can be a wonderful tool in the hands of a perfect God. What the world says is flawed, God sees as flawless. God uses imperfect people to relate His ways to the world. In our imperfections, He shows Himself to be far superior and willing to mend. We’re all messed up. The question is, will you allow the Lord to use you as a broken vessel?
Today’s guest writer is Brandi Crowe. A hairdresser for over 25 years, she is currently the owner of Brandi Crowe salon in Buford, GA. She loves hiking, a good cup of coffee, and spending time with family and friends. Brandi lives in a custom farmhouse with her husband Robby and cat Harold.