Wednesday, September 2, 2009
The Tale of Two Pots
This is a picture of what I did with my bird bath after it developed a crack in it. Looking at this reminds me of The Tale of Two pots that was published in Christian Parenting Today 1999.
It seems there once were two pots. They were carried by the King's Water Bearer on opposite ends of a long pole. One pot was perfect: well-decorated, beautiful, flawless. The other pot was very pretty, too, made of the same good clay and bright colors, nearly perfect--except for a single crack.
Each day, the King's Water Bearer would make the trek down from the palace to the river below and fill up each pot. While both started out full of water, the cracked pot left a trail of droplets along the path.
As the years passed, the cracked pot came to dread the day's journey. It was always the same: watching the perfect pot pour out his contents into the King's cistern without having lost a single drop, then pouring out his own offering, which seemed so much less. Which was why, at last, the cracked pot spoke up.
"Oh, Water Bearer," said the pot. "Please replace me. I have tried my hardest, but I know I've failed to be what you want me to be."
"That is not so," said the Water Bearer.
"It is!" said the cracked pot. "Just look at my offering next to the perfect pot's. It's so little. I'm ashamed of what I bring before the King."
"Enough!" said the Water Bearer, his face as dark as a storm cloud. "The perfect pot fulfills his purpose, that is true. But it was the King himself who picked you. And you have fulfilled his plan."
"I have?" said the cracked pot, full of confusion.
"Have you not noticed the hill we walk up every day?" asked the Water Bearer.
"No," said the pot quietly. "I've been so busy looking at the crack and watching the water dripping out."
"Look now," said the Water Bearer. The pot looked and saw that all along one side of the path grew beautiful flowers.
"Have you not seen me spreading seeds as I walked up the hill?" asked the Water Bearer. And then he said in a kinder voice, "Those flowers grow from your loss, little pot, and they please the King."
And at last the cracked pot saw that --crack and all--he did fulfill his Master's purpose.
(Thank you Ann for sending this to me in 1999. It has blessed me every year as I am watering my flowers and thinking about the revelation of this tale.)