Walking the Thin Line


Flower & pot

Flower & pot (Photo credit: Vijay Sonar)

Father,

When I look at my life, I seem to be walking a very thin line between giving up and barely keeping my head above the water.  Maybe it is a safety valve You’ve built in to my life to keep in check my tendency to be prideful and selfish. The struggle drives me to You and opens my eyes to other struggling people, giving me the ability to relate to them! It’s like the story about the cracked pot used to grow flowers along the path. Take my struggle with forgiveness.

It’s interesting to note that most bible devotionals I read the past couple of days focused on love, fruits of the spirit etc. The theme touched me a lot and the repeating pattern caught my notice.

Father, I need knowledge in Your perspective, so that I may rejoice in what You choose for me. Most of the time, I waste days being discouraged about my circumstances and challenges, when they are really blessings in disguise, given to teach me in Your ways. Thank You for being patient with me when my family and friends acknowledge how difficult it is to love me and live with me.

Father, I came across Hebrews 10: 26 – 31 yesterday, which reminded me of the man Christian saw who had lost You in Bunyan’s “Pilgrim’s Progress” and I grew worried. I need to always remember You Father! Thank You for scattering the little reminders through out my day that show me You still love me!

Father, forgive me my cracked nature and my forgetfulness and use them for Your work. Just as You are patient with me, help me be patient with the cracked pots and forgetful people in my life and love them like You do. I ask this in the name of Jesus, my Lord and my Savior.

Amen

–xx–

The Broken Pot (source: www.word4life.com)

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)

 

Advertisements

Being first


There’s a saying in my country that translates to “Be the first, even if it’s hell”. The saying is used to encourage ppl to be on time taking hell as an example: that the first comers or the earliest to enter can get the easy punishments while the worst punishments are reserved for the latecomers. I agree that ppl should strive to be on time.

BUT

As a christian my motto should be to “reach heaven, even as the last, even as the least, even if i’m crawling on hands and feet…”

Being genuine


A newsletter by James MacDonald some time ago stated some characteristics/signs to know that a person is living in Christ…

  1. Increasingly loving. Not perfect but increasingly…
  2. Increasingly obedient. Not perfectly but increasingly…
  3. Genuine… Nothing phony…

My own life proves this to me. When I walk with the Lord I am increasingly all that is said above. And during the times I slip, my loving nature, obedience and genuineness all spiral downwards… And I am ashamed. Because I am not christian enough to be christian. I am afraid that people will find out the struggle that goes on inside everyday and how utterly I have failed and continuously fail all that I speak of and consider important.

But the mercy and grace of the Lord is that no matter how many times I have traveled beyond – what our enemy would like us to believe is – the point of no return, He has taken me back when I returned.

The enemy wants us to believe that we are beyond help. Satan wants us to give up. But don’t. No matter where you are, go back to the Lord. Never mind how many times you fall. Go and tell Him all. Tell Him everything! All the times you have been less than loving, less than obedient and all the times you’ve given in to the pressure to conform and betrayed that person you are inside and turned away from the inside-out change that the Lord is doing in you. Satan doesn’t want you coming to the Lord with your failures or your weaknesses or your sins… And so he will whisper lies in your ears to stop you from coming to the person who can heal all your brokenness away.

It is never too late until the very end. Even the very end.

And there is NOTHING that can separate you from the Love of God and He is faithful. He will finish what He has started in you and He will NEVER give up!

Grabbing is no good


Grabbing is no good..

I grabbed… It didn’t work out, so I had to give it up again… We can only be happy with and keep what God gives in His own time… And He knows the right time…

Sometimes when you’re afraid that you will not have certain things that your heart yearns for, good things even, but things that the Lord hasn’t chosen to give you just yet; things He wants you to wait for, and Satan comes and dangles it under your very nose, what happens is: you grab. And grabbing causes you to lose your balance… And you fall.

I don’t know whether I’m making myself clear here… Maybe I’m still in the process of understanding all this about grabbing… But I do already understand one thing. Grabbing doesn’t work. It’s good and right that you wait… For the Lord is good, right and fair.  And He loves you with an eternal love. He said seek the kingdom first and all other things will be added to our lot and He WILL do it.

Grabbing is no good… I have fallen… But the Lord hasn’t given up on me… And for that I’m thankful. And I hope in his promise that what He has started will be finished in me…

Grabbing ultimately fails… But Patience leads to all things good. God is good. And I must wait…

First: Kingdom of God


The more I live my life, the more aware I am of how weak I am as a christian. I complain… I worry… I cry because I am not or don’t have certain things; even in my christian journey. Jesus, explains what our priorities in life should be in this beautifully simple passage: Matthew 6:25-34

I have realized that in my life, rather than seeking the Kingdom of God first, I’m seeking knowledge, peace, happiness, love, money and the beautiful things that money can buy. Jesus doesn’t say that we don’t need these things that we want. He just says: ‘God knows you need these things. But seek God’s kingdom and His righteousness FIRST.’

I think I survived the crisis point…


It’s amazing how a few difficult months can teach you, years’ worth of wisdom and experience.

Looking back at today compared with all my other days in the past couple of months, I see a BIG difference. It’s like opening up my eyes for the first time after just passing the crisis point of a terrible sickness and knowing I survived. Now my only need is a deep and restful sleep to heal, which I’m sure God in His grace will provide. I feel peaceful, free and alive after a long time.

One consolation for all the times I”ve fallen are the many lessons I learnt out of the experience. One lesson that will stick with me will be that I must first be a christian with my inner circle. God, my self and with my family in that order… All others come after. It doesn’t matter if you’re the kindest, most caring person to all your friends, if you are a screaming sister and a lazy, undutiful daughter at home.. That was a bittersweet eye opener for me.

Then again, I read a lot. From cotton candy romances to beautiful classics (that ought to be taken in moderate doses) to some real positive books authored by christians like  C. S. Lewis. I must say, even the, romances gave one or two insights in to human behaviour. Other positive people, whose speeches and writings that really helped during these days were Joyce Meyer and Norman Vincent Peale.

So here I am. A couple of years worth of wisdom added to my name. I”m all ready to see what the next few months are going to bring me.. What ever it is, I know that God knows what He’s doing, even though I am clueless.

I hope you fail


I recently read this in “Our Daily Bread” the devotional published by RBC Ministries. I cannot remember the date but the devotional text was about a speaker who said in his speech that he hoped we fail. That we fail at something really important to us. He said that failure is the best teacher of all and teaches the best in life’s lessons.