Monday, November 10, 2008

Cracked! The Past and the Pitcher.

Angie shared on her blog, Bring the Rain, how God told her to smash a pitcher. Then He told her to glue it back together. If you haven't read it, it is most definitely worth a read. But, as with much of her blog, I recommend that you have tissues handy.

I shared the link with a new friend and we decided to spend a day together and smash some pitchers. I have to say, there aren't really words to describe it, though I will try.

First came the shopping. We hit several antique stores with a budget in mind and an idea of what we were looking for. In my mind I wanted a pitcher that represented everything I always wanted or strived to be. Beautiful. Elegant. Simple with just a hint of fancy. Substantial. Useful. Affordable. Just when it seemed I would never find what I was looking for (trust me I saw plenty I liked, but my budget was much smaller than the $85-$300 range I was seeing!), I looked up among all these expensive pitchers and saw one I really liked. I couldn't see a price, so I maneuvered it carefully off the shelf. There was no price (you could say it was priceless)! My friend was sure it was as expensive as the others on the shelf. But, I was determined to know if this was the one. I couldn't let it go without knowing. Then came my little miracle for the day. The saleswoman approached me and asked if I wanted to purchase the pitcher. I told her I needed to know the price. And yes, I sent up a little prayer that it would be in my budget. I was becoming attached to it as I carried it around.

She came back showing me a chip and discounting the price from $45 to $30. She even told me I could display it this way so the chip wouldn't show. No, I did not tell her that my intentions were to smash it to pieces that very aftenoon, and that the little chip would be completely insignificant in light of what I was going to put my pitcher through. We laughed quite a bit about that chip! I even had thought of trying to return it in its newly rendered state, but I digress. I bought the pitcher thanking the Lord for providing the right pitcher for the right price.

When you think of a pitcher as an analogy of yourself, of your best self, letting go and letting it fall, knowing that it won't ever be right or whole again isn't as easy as you'd think. Sure, my friend and I were having fun, posing, taking pictures, laughing. But, I almost backed out. I almost kept my pitcher whole. I wanted it to stay beautiful and useful. In order to make this analogy real, I had to let go. I did.


Broken. Shattered. Pieces.

That's me. My best self. That's all I have to offer. I am worthless. I am broken. I am dust.

And then Jesus found me.

He took these pieces and He put them back together.

As my friend and I pieced our pitchers back together we talked. We shared with each other the brokeness of our lives. For me, it is my parents' divorce when I was 6 years old. It is my brothers' alcoholism that began shortly after that. It is the homosexual relationship I had in highschool and college. It is the infertility that rocked my marriage, that crippled my sense of womanhood. It is the loss of 3 precious babies early in pregnancy. It is the broken family relationships due to my faith in Jesus. These things and so much more.
I pieced my pitcher together. One piece at a time. Working this way and that. Sometimes I had to push and shove hard to get a piece in that didn't want to go in. Sometimes there were gaps. A few times I broke it more trying to get it back together the best I could. (and Angie, if you read this, despite your warnings of the wrath of the glue gun, I got a blister!)

Now my best self is cracked, broken, with gaps and holes. When my pitcher was whole it could hold water. It could hold water and never let it go. Now my pitcher doesn't hold much, if any. The water flows in and it flows out. There is no stopping it. It can't be contained and it can't get stale. The hardest hit places, the point of impact, that's where the water flows the most. The water is the Holy Spirit. I can no longer bottle Him up in my heart. He just flows out of me. Through the very places I hurt the most.

When you look at my life and you see the gaps, you see the imperfections, and you see the holes, I hope you will also feel the Holy Spirit flow over you from those very places. I'm not perfect. I'm not whole.

Praise the God of the Universe, I'm CRACKED!

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