God, who first ordered light to shine in darkness, has flooded our hearts with his light …. This priceless treasure we hold …. in a common earthenware jar – to show that the splendid power of it belongs to God and not to us. We are handicapped on all sides, but we are never frustrated; we are puzzled but never in despair …. We may be knocked down, but we are never knocked out!
(2 Corinthians 4:6-9 The New Testament in Modern English. J.B. Phillips))
A thing worth doing well…
…….is worth doing badly. That brief bit of wisdom from G.K Chesterton has been helpful on my imperfect journey through life. At funerals and wedding anniversaries our descriptions of people and remembrance of events can become unrecognizable to those who truly knew the person or the events.
Our recent celebration of our 50th anniversary would have blown up in our faces if our “perfect” love for each other had been celebrated. Our relationship is strong and loving but it hasn’t and isn’t perfect by any stretch of the imagination.
Loving is still worth doing even when it isn’t perfect. In so many areas of life we miss the joy of the good in our relationships because we are irritated by the imperfections instead of celebrating what is good and true while still flawed.
In Richard Wagamese’s recent novel, Starlight he writes: “I once saw a ceramic heart, fractured but made beautiful again by an artist filling its cracks with gold. The artist offering a celebration of imperfection, of the flawed rendered magnificent by its reclamation. I loved that symbol until I came to understand that it’s not about the filling so much as it’s about being brave enough to enter the cracks in my life so that my gold becomes revealed. I am my celebration then. See, it’s not in our imagined wholeness that we become art; it’s in the celebration of our cracks…”
A Prayer for Today
O God we are harder on ourselves and one another than you ever will be. Our flaws and failures, even when being mended and forgiven scream out at us. Give us eyes to see one another with grace and patience. Help us to see the good of your presence in our lives even while it is in somewhat dodgy packaging …. For Jesus’ sake