Frustrated with your failures? Feeling condemned? Canít
overcome a bad habit? Iíve got great news for you: "Now we have this
treasure in earthen vessels, that the transcendence of the power may be of God
and not of us" (2 Corinthians 4:7). Your humble little vessel of sin is
made that way on purpose. We are clay pots by design, not because we have gone
afoul of Godís intention for us. Let this revelation soothe the exhausted
self-improver. Retire, Christian soldier. You fail by design, not because you
are a failure. God wants you cognizant of the source of your power, and He has
many creative ways of driving this home. One of these is sin.
Wouldnít some of us love to shed our earthenware now and still walk
among mortals? Our sins keep us from producing a perfect walk, and we mourn
this. What we do not understand is that an imperfect walk is the main idea of
this life. God puts the treasure of His spirit in earthen vessels now to keep
the vessels from situating themselves upon high places.
Thank God for the comfort of mistakes. Mistakes remind us of our clayhood and
drive us toward Christ. When we finally quit chasing perfection and accept these
vessels of clay, we will become happier. When we forget about ourselves, peace
will ensue. The happy acceptance of imperfection is the beginning of easy
breathing. Because, really, how can you be peaceful and kicking yourself at the
Deliverance ministries think theyíre doing you a favor by trying to pray,
pray, pray you out of your trials. These ministries thrive on you wanting a
problem-free life. "I want the answer to my problem," is the pitch
today that keeps these ministries at bat. I thank God for their track record of
failure. What the poor seeker does not realize is that the problem is the
answer, and that shedding the problem before its time would be disastrous.
God is always making matters humanly impossible first, so He can set up what He
is going to do later. Itís the same reason youíre a sinner now. Why not
just make you perfect and skip this humiliating sin part? Itís simple,
really. Itís because you wonít be able to enjoy perfection later unless youíve
been a sinner now. Everyone wants to be happy in heaven. Thatís normal. But
then everyone wants to curse sin down here. What these folks donít realize is
that their happiness there depends on their misery here. The joy of perfection
rests on the misery of missing the earthly mark. So really, God isnít doing
this sin thing to you, Heís doing it for you. This imperfect
life of yours is a backhanded favor.
Think of scriptural exhortation as a matting inside of which God intends to
paint a masterpiece. These exhortations are God giving Himself an opportunity to
show the world what He can do through you. What a difference between that and
you getting an opportunity to show to the world what you can do for God.
If youíve still got religious bones in your body, what I just said will
deflate you. But when the spirit touches this thing, youíll become thrilled.
Because how good will it feel to finally realize that youíre not supposed to
live like Jesus, but rather, that Jesus is supposed to live His life through
you? What a difference.
© copyright 2004 by Martin Zender. All rights reserved.