September 17, 2016

Lumpy, but Precious

2 Corinthians 4:7-18

We have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God. . . .

—  2 Corinthians 4:7

In our small church we grew to appreciate and care for one another. Ron and Andy became good friends, and many of us learned that if you confided in Andy, or admitted some fear or dark truth, he would give you complete, authentic compassion; you could feel it.

Andy was a musician, and he wrote songs for the church that were simple and sweet.

One day at his house Andy showed me his favorite guitar—an original Martin. It was beautiful but, I thought, a little lumpy—it didn’t have nice, clean edges. Andy asked if I wanted to play it, and he handed it to me. I strummed a few chords and asked, “What’s an original Martin worth?” Andy said, like it was no big deal, “Well, that one is a little over $14,000.” My fingers froze as the weight of its value hit me.

In a way, this is how we are in the hands of God—lumpy, but precious. We are like slightly crude jars of clay, and even though we are imperfect, the Lord can do amazing work in and through us. We are forgiven sinners, precious to God—and useful to him!

It’s good to try hard and to seek after righteousness. Yet we are not called sanctified because we are so righteous and holy, but because God has taken us into his hands and filled us with his Spirit of love. Though we are flawed, in his hands we are oh, so precious!

Make me useful in your hands, Father. I am yearning for eternal things, and I long to reflect your glory in the way I live. I know that this is from you, not me, and I’m asking in Jesus’ name. Amen.

About the author — Keith Mannes

Keith Mannes serves as pastor at Highland Christian Reformed Church in McBain, Michigan. Keith and his wife, Alicia, recently celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary,
and they are thankful for their three children—Eben, Charis, and Breanna.

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