The Cracked Pot

Brad Stanton —  April 27, 2014 — 12 Comments

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I found this story some time ago and wanted to share it because it is sooo good.

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 in his master’s house.  Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments.  But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfections, 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 master’s house.  Because of my flaws, you have to do all of this work and you don’t get full value for 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”.

My note: I can’t remember where I found this story, but I wanted to pass it along.

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12 responses to The Cracked Pot

  1. 

    Reblogged this on judith99blog and commented:
    I’ve heard this story years ago, but still bears repeating!

  2. 

    Reblogged this on New Author -Carole Parkes and commented:
    A lovely heart-warming story showing us all that having faults doesn’t mean we’re not perfect to someone else.

  3. 

    My roommate broke the leg of my porcelain sleeping pig. Shortly after I read something about wabi-sabi, the Japanese art of finding beauty in imperfection. The Monster-glued break is camouflaged by the flower pattern on my pig. After thinking about wabi-sabi, I decided my porcelain pig is more beautiful with his secret broken and patched leg. It’s part of his life.

  4. 

    Sweet story! God can and does use imperfect vessels. “Have thine own way Lord, have thine own way. Thou art the potter, I am the clay…”

  5. 

    Makes me fell better about being called a “crackpot” — although my grandkids think “crackpot’ is a compound word that refers to 2 different kinds of hallucinogenic drugs.

  6. 

    I have loved this story for a long time. Nice to see it posted again.

  7. 

    Great message. I am re-blogging this for Tuesday. Thanks for sharing it. I am glad the Lord uses whatever talent we have, even if we feel it is only a little bit.

  8. 

    I read this story in my mindfulness book, and I loved it so I also put it on my blog some time ago! It is a really great story!

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