Saturday, May 14, 2022

Treasures in Jars of Clay

By: Melanie Moore

I'm learning that the key to connecting to my teenage sons is to do things with them that they enjoy -- to join them in their hobbies and interests. This is easy with my oldest son because we share so many similar interests like reading, antique shopping, and watching movies. However, with my youngest son, it is a little harder for me since his hobbies normally include all things adventure and danger.

I have this natural aversion to adventure and danger.... see the problem?

However, I realized that my son loves to be outdoors and loves to be active. This seemed like a great common ground to spend some time together. So, I signed us up to complete a 5K race that is only seven weeks away. In my mind, I thought this would be totally easy -- I mean, it's 3.1 miles so it can't be that hard, right?

It turns out that completing 3.1 miles without dying is actually a little harder than expected for "someone" who sits at a desk job all day and never exercises. Ahem...

As my son runs laps around me, and I jog only slightly faster than the turtle on the path beside me, I realize that maybe my body is slightly less "in shape" than I remembered. 

Perhaps God gives us examples of our own fragility so that we can remember who weak we are apart from him... We are, after all, only jars of clay.

But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power
belongs to God and not to us. We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed;
perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken;
struck down, but not destroyed;

2 Corinthians 4:7-9

You see sometimes, I forget my own weakness, and I don't mean only in physical efforts like running. I plow ahead with plans in my life, relying on my own strength, and then I wonder why God doesn't make them successful. 

The limits of my own strength -- my own jar of clay -- is a reminder to me that any power I have belongs to God and not to me. 

This, my friends, is reassuring! We don't have to have all the strength in the whole world to face all that life throws at us. We simply can rely on the strength and power of God within us!

That truth allows us to say that no matter what life throws at us, we are able to stand firm in our faith. Like this beautiful passage in 2 Corinthians says, we may feel afflicted in every way -- but we are not crushed by the weight of that affliction! 

We may feel confused and perplexed, but friends, we are not driven to despair because we trust that God is in control of all things and working them for our good and for His glory. 

We may be persecuted by those around us, but we are not forsaken because we know that God is always with us!

We may be struck down, but we are not destroyed. We are more than conquerors through Jesus Christ!

Isn't that amazing encouragement today? I pray it will give you strength as you face whatever curveballs life throws at you. 

As for me, I'll be slowly trotting my way to the finish line, remembering with each step that this jar of clay ain't fast.

1 comment:

  1. This > "The limits of my own strength -- my own jar of clay -- is a reminder to me that any power I have belongs to God and not to me." Is such an unwavering statement so true for us to keep in mind. I've found that one of the reasons I need God is because every time I tried to do life on my own, I failed. Praise be to our good good Father.


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