It’s been two years to the day since I felt the sting of rejection. I was told I was no longer needed for the job. I was no longer wanted. The job was no longer mine. In other words, I got the boot.
Oh. I don’t remember the date so I can commemorate the embarrassment of losing my job. I remember the date for what I gained. For sometimes when you lose, you gain so much more than you ever thought you owned.
Sure. I eventually gained a new job. New self-confidence. A deeper trust in God. For what a better way to learn total dependence on God than to lose a big ticket item you depended on daily.
2 Corinthians 4:7 tells me that I am a fragile clay jar. And yes, I am. I’ve learned these past two years that a personal rejection can make or break that fragile clay jar. It depends on how I have filled the jar. Oh yes. It’s fragile. The jar can break. It sure has cracks in it. They’re obvious if you come too close. These cracks are caused by greed and anger. Envy. Pride. Fear. Jealousy. And many other uncomfortable undoings.
Oh. I’ve tried to patch these cracks. Time and again. Repeatedly over the years, I’ve worked feverishly on some slow growing crack that just never mends. The problem is that I tend to try to make all the repairs by myself. But I’ve discovered a holy patchwork that is flawless. Oh. The scars are still in sight, but they can be filled with a righteous covering. In the midst of my patches and flaws, this patchmaker comes in and has begun filling this fragile clay jar with just the right amount of holiness. He makes the repairs when the clay softens enough to accept change.
In the spots where the clay has become so hardened, he gently applies love and forgiveness to soften the spot. He does that so he can remold this old vessel into one that looks more like him. Oh. He doesn’t remove the scars, but he fills them with his signature blend of mercy, grace, love and forgiveness. The blend is actually personalized for each clay pot.
Because at the end of the day, it’s not the clay jar that’s the prize. It’s the contents that really matter.
We are like fragile clay jars that contain a treasure. Our great power is from God, not from ourselves. 2 Corinthians 4:7
Pressed but not crushed. Perplexed but not in despair. Hunted but not abandoned. Knocked down but not destroyed.
We are pressed by troubles, but the hope within us keeps the weight of those troubles from crushing the life out of us. Our God is strong when we are weak.
We are perplexed by loss and momentary troubles, but desperation is not our friend. God provides for our every need with precision in his timing.
We are hunted by the enemy himself, but God does not abandon us when we are at our weakest. He fights for us. He is the host of heavens armies.
We will be knocked down. Many times. But we will not be destroyed when we have the light of heaven shining in our hearts. We are not alone in this battle. This fragile clay jar has withstood fiery heat to get to this point of strength.
Our great power is from God and God alone. It is not of ourselves. Never be fooled into thinking you are strong enough on your own to handle what life throws at you. You are a fragile clay jar. The filler is the key to strength and endurance.