This week’s garden delivery included a beautiful surprise bringing pure delight. It was unlike the other day’s bounty in that it wasn’t for nourishment and it didn’t need to be cooked, canned or frozen. Yes, there were beans, tomatoes, cantaloupe and watermelon, but the surprise was a beautiful bundle of fresh cut flowers: sunflowers and zinnias mixed with fresh basil. It was just like God to send a bundle of beauty just because He loved me. I paused to think of the many times He blessed just for pleasure and delight.
I reached under the cabinet to find an appropriate vase to hold such beauty. I pushed aside the old silver teapot because it was so badly tarnished. It was stuck underneath the sink waiting for the day that I was willing to clean and polish the black away. I smiled as I pulled it out anyway, knowing that it was perfect to hold such a gift.
No, I didn’t clean and polish it first, but used it just as it was. The focus was not the container but the beauty it was about to be filled with. I carefully trimmed each stem and took time to look as each bloom. The individual petals burst with brilliant color that only God could have created something such as this. Shorty the pot was filled and it no longer screamed of the need to be cleaned and polished, but now declared the beauty that was within. The glory is in the treasure within, not the container. It is one of the most beautiful arrangements I have ever created.
“But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies.” 2 Corinthians 4:7-10
A loud lie of the enemy comes to many saying you are too tarnished to ever be used by God. The liar tells us we are too damaged, broken and messy to ever be filled with the beauty of the Lord. The lying enemy presses you underneath the cabinet to live life hidden in darkness and despair, missing the plan and purpose that the Lord has for you.
But praise God; He always knows where we are. He places His hand on us and pulls us up to the top and fills us with the beauty of Jesus.
It is the treasure within that shows off the power of God.
The attention is off of us and all of our failures when he overtakes us. We carry a new beauty and a new purpose. A transformed life declares the glory of the Lord.
May I encourage you today?
You do not belong in a hidden dark cabinet. You are beautiful to Him. You are fearfully and wonderfully made. He has a plan and a purpose for your life and He will use you just as you are if you will just allow Him to have you. He will clean you, transform you and fill you. Let Him have your “Yes” and you too will exude the beauty of the Lord.