This Shattered Jar


A counselor once told me the difference between how we roll and how God rolls. We spend an inordinate amount of time and energy patching ourselves up but really we are just vessels. Jars of clay. Cups with a treasure within. Jars become comfortable, common, old, cracked, chipped. We try to patch up our old comfortable life but the treasure cannot, will not be contained.

From within, He will burst forth, shattering the vessels we once were. And then He remakes us into something new. Throughout this growth process, we resist, He persists.

This Shattered Jar

Who knows the person I could be
so much more than the clay I see.
I look at all my lumps and scars.
He works inside this broken jar.
I vainly patch an cover up.
He screams out no an’ breaks this cup.
I cry as all my pieces fall
while others watch enrapt with awe!
Reflecting eyes I see them see
a glimpse of Him inside of me?

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17 Responses

  1. WOW, that is so where my heart is this morning. Quite aware of my flaws, and not wanting to put the mask on..I just want everyone to do it…being the vessel that is being molded and turned into something beautiful…wonder why there is so much pressure on the finished product, and not pressure on loving the moment..loving the knowlege that HE is changing us…mmmmmm

    (fighting the flu too..maybe too much time to reflect..hey you have to love me-Jesus said so!)

  2. I love it!

    The shattering part is no fun – but I understand the process.

    In the midst of a terrible trial a couple of years back (actually the trial is not completely over), I had a dream of a beautiful vessel being picked up by the hand of God and thrown violently against an impenetrable wall. Needless to say, it was in hundreds of pieces on the ground, not even a memory of the beauty it had once been. I saw God’s hand beginning to pick up the pieces, hopefully to restore it to its former beauty…

    Now I don’t think it was so beautiful – eventually the pieces may come together to be useful once again, but the cracks will remain to show the work of God.

    Thanks, Ric, you spoke to my heart, once again.

  3. Darla: “hey you have to love me-Jesus said so!” Hahaha! Ok, but believers like you make it easy.

    Michelle: I like to imagine God breaking us from within rather than from without. More like the butterfly breaking out of the cocoon. The shattered pieces are no longer needed. We are transformed into something new, different than before… and more suited to His purpose for us here in this world.

  4. I think you’re right. In my dream (vision) I kept expecting the vessel to come back together – it hasn’t yet – maybe that vessel wasn’t at all what He wanted.

  5. Ric,

    I heard a song yesterday driving home from work, the refrain of which was significant.

    Lord, make me blind that I might see. . .
    Make me lame that I might praise you on my knees. . .

    Sometimes it might be an ‘outer breaking’ that ushers in the ‘inner breaking’

    Just a thought from a ‘been there, done that’ perspective.

  6. Thanks for stopping by Dan. Interesting song… not sure I would sing it though… at least not with any sincerity.

  7. Funny…I’m of better use when i’m all cracked up. plain and simple! Otherwise, when i perceive myself to be mended – i get way too fleshy and self reliant. Which equals disaster.

    Ric…beautiful. Wonderful thoughts! Thanks. Again!

  8. Tam, Interesting point. I will be spending some time pondering these two perspectives.

  9. Ric, I am aware everyday of what a pathetic rib bone I really am, all of my flaws, all of my mistakes…but I think He also wants us to understand the full extent of what He did and who we are in Him. I believe we need to see ourselves the way He does through redeemed eyes, yet keep a constant check in our hearts that we can do NOTHING without Him. I’m puzzled I guess knowing that He is constantly breaking and remolding but it’s not to stay weak, but to understand and draw on our strength from Him. I love how Darla put it, we need to be constantly aware of our weakness and flaws, and I think the mask she is speaking of represents our flesh. Beautifully put, but I think the rest of it is when we He can make us stronger (emotionally, physically and spiritually) than we ever could ourselves and that’s when we get up and go…in Jesus name.

  10. Thanks for your thoughts godsgal. I love your “see ourselves the way He does…” thought.

  11. That reminds me of the bible passage where God talks of His people using their own cisterns that cannot hold water; I had to look it up but it’s Jeremiah 2:12-14.

    I have a fiercely independent streak; I think I’m in charge of everything, and have the power to fix all of my own problems. I’m trying to learn to a). be more humble (I’m always reading Luke 18:9-14–the parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector), and to remember that I can’t go it alone–I need to depend more on Him.

    Your poem gently reminds me that I am nothing without Him, and that He alone has the power to make me into who He wants me to be.

    Just a thought.

  12. Hi ky! Thanks for coming by… sorry, couldn’t resist. I’m so glad this poem spoke to you and even took you to some specific stories in the Bible! So cool.
    Thanks for letting me know some of your heart. God Bless.

  13. The thoughts from your cousin just give everything a whole new perspective. I have been a regular contributor to St. Jude’s for a couple of years now. (A small amount mind you.) I had gotten to the point that I rarely opened the envelopes they sent me. It was just easier not to have to see the faces of the small children who were battling cancer. Hey I was doing my part, right? Well I received a different envelope from St Jude’s asking me to sign a “cheer card” and there was Carson’s picture. I read a little about him and decided to Google his name. Not because I didn’t believe he was real, but just because. Like I said your cousins comments give everything a whole new perspective. I often struggle with the sin in my life and with having to “take up my cross daily”. Now, whole new perspective. My goal will once again be to lift up all these little souls to God on a daily bases. As for the “cheer card” I am at a lost for word as to what one might say to a child with cancer that might lift his or her spirits.

  14. Hi Ricci: I’m glad you came by and were touched by Carson’s words. I’m sure whatever words of encouragement you use, they will be much appreciated.

  15. […] I think working too much is part of the cause. I have reworked an older poem originally titled This Shattered Jar. I think Broken Vessels is a better fit. I am still not satisfied with it but maybe you can help […]

  16. I have enjoyed reading your poetry.
    Blessings,
    Scotti

  17. Thanks Scotti, I am glad you are enjoying them. I hope to be more active soon. Until then feel free to browse. 😉

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