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 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 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 your 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.”
Now, aren’t you glad you are a “cracked pot” too!
I feel like a cracked pot or maybe a crackpot. Ok….. a little of both. I have made plans that have failed. Even plans for God. Stephen and I have invested hoping to have more to give to God’s Kingdom and we have watched those investments tank. As I trust Christ with my life I have come to realize that what I see as failure may just be the plan that God has purposed for my life in order to expand the Kingdom. I guess that is my hope.
I keep thinking of the little girl named Karin from the slums of Kolkata that touched our blog team so much. This little girl who lives in extreme poverty, with absolutely no wealth, inspired 10 Americans to tell her story. Karin’s joy in Jesus may just be the reason why several hundred children are now sponsored. She was able to put the tears in our eyes and bust our hearts wide open because she showed us a bigger God then we could see. She showed us joy without money and materialism. She showed us boldness without parents who praise her and she showed us love without condition. Maybe she was a cracked pot based on her circumstances but she certainly put flowers on the masters table.
Mary, I am still searching for you. Can you see the difference you made by sponsoring this little girl?
Hey all my friends, you can make a difference too! Sponsor a child!
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I followed all of you bloggers in India, and I must say, my life will never be the same. Honestly, truly. And, I just loved this post. We sponsored a little boy, the same age as my oldest son (11), and both my sons were very excited to write him a letter. We will be getting our letters in the mail this week (along with pictures!…when I read your first post about Karin, I cried my eyes out!). I think about our boy in India everyday!
Thanks to all of you for giving us blog readers the gift of becoming more “compassionate!”
FYI- both Melissa and Angie are incredible people!
Thank you so so much for your encouraging comment and for supporting The Child Survival Program.
The impact the Child Survival Program had on the community that we visited was huge for the kingdom. This was dominantly a Hindu area and because of this program, many mothers are coming to know Jesus in addition to saving babies. Thank you again for responding to the needs!
Thank you!! I am so happy to hear you and your family have sponsored children. Thanks for praying for Mary too.
By the way, your comment made me cry. I am still so raw from this trip.
I fell in love with all of you on the trip to India. I read both the LPM and Bring the Rain blogs, and started reading yours while you were there. You, Keely, and Angie took me on a Rickshaw ride to a Child Survival Center, and I was hooked. I was unable to choose a child to sponser on the website, didn’t really hear God telling me to do this. But when Keely provided the links to support the Survival Centers, I knew this was what I was suppose to do. I am believing that my support added to others will end the babies with no names that are dying daily. I pray that what God has planted in your heart during the India trip never grows dim. I know that ya’ll taking us on this ride has changed my life and what I truly consider my needs against my wants. I to am praying that Mary will send Karin the picture she so desires.
Thank you so much for serving in places some of us will most likely never go. I followed all of you on your journey to India and my life will never be the same. My husband and I jumped on board to sponsor a child in India and our 27 year old daughter sponsored a child in Haiti (and is already planning on going to visit her sponsored daughter next year with Compassion Int’l.). Thank you too for this post. There are many times I feel that my life does not measure up to all that God has planned for me. I compare me way to much to other people who do so many wonderful things in the name of Jesus. I have been so changed by Kiran’s story and have prayed daily that Mary will send that coveted picture she so wants. May God continue to use you to help Mary see the difference such a small amount of money, time, and prayer can make in someone’s life. God bless. Patti