Wednesday, July 20, 2016

№ 280. Thursday in the Desert

Oil Lamps at the Studium Biblicum Franciscanum
Flagellation Monastery (Via Dolorosa)

“Those who saw so dimly could be further blinded by the light of full revelation. Jesus, therefore, does not reveal with complete clarity the true nature of the messianic kingdom which is unostentatious. Instead he filters the light through symbols, the resulting half-light is nevertheless a grace from God, an invitation to ask for something better and accept something greater.” Living Space

Cracked Pot

A water bearer had two large pots, one hung on each end of a pole which he carried across his neck.

One of the pots had a crack in it, while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water. By the end of the long walk from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.

For a full two years this went on daily, with the bearer delivering only one and a half pots full of water to his house.

The cracked pot grew increasingly ashamed of its imperfection. It was able to accomplish only half of what it was intended to do.

One day, out of its bitter failure, the cracked pot lamented to the water bearer as he bent by the stream.

Words came slowly. “I … I am ashamed of myself and my inability to fulfill my role. This crack in my side causes water to leak all the way back to your house.”

Great compassion welled up in the bearer’s heart, “Ah, my little friend! As we return to the house, notice instead the beauty around you. Not your perceived inadequacies.”

With pots full, the bearer rose from the stream and headed home. The meandering path led through a mostly parched land.

Before opening the wooden door to his humble home, the bearer said to the pot, “Did you notice the flowers and green grasses on your side of the path but not on the other pot’s side?”

“Yes…well, no. I tried to see the beauty but the disgrace of my inadequacies blocks out much of my vision.”

“Know this, my little friend… I have always known about your imperfection. I planted flower seeds on your side of the path. Every day while we walk back, you’ve watered them. You have brought beauty to the land!”

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