She hands me a wilted camellia and three droopy dandelions. “Put them in a jar, Mommy! Put it on the table!” And of course I do. What Mother wouldn’t receive such a gift from her daughter? She didn’t feel the need to perk up, shape up, or fix this simple bouquet before placing it in my hands. Never mind that it looked weary, wasted, worn, and unfit for public display. Hers was a gift of love. And she knew I would receive it because she felt secure in my love.
And right there, in the middle of my kitchen, God uses one of my children to point me to himself.
God loves me. No strings attached. I don’t have to fix up, straighten up, or brush off the past. He welcomes me because of Jesus. He looks at me with pleasure because of Jesus. God calls me daughter because of Christ’s sacrifice on my behalf. All that is Christ’s belongs to me. I am his and he is mine.
Yet, how often do I hesitate to draw near to God when I feel weary, wasted, and worn? Instead of offering my life to him, I hide behind feelings of inadequacy and insufficiency. When my sin rears its ugly head yet again, I stumble my way to the cross wondering if he’ll even accept me after what I’ve done, said, or failed to do.
But still, God beckons me. Not because I’m great or lovely or anything special to behold. He invites me to be a living sacrifice. Fit for his use because of Christ in me.
What would happen if I truly let this sink in? That the God of the Universe says, “Call me Daddy. You’re mine. I bought you, adopted you, and made you a co-heir with my Son. Come to me with your weariness. Give me your wasted pieces. Let me make something beautiful from your worn out life.”
I think it would calm my fear, remove my shame, and fuel my joy.
This is what it’s like to have a treasure in a jar of clay. Yes, cracked and torn. Weary, worn, and wasted. But filled up with the power and beauty of Christ. So that his glory can spill out of me.
This is what it’s like to feel secure in God’s love. Safe. Stable. Strong. Sure.
And it’s in this that I have the strength to not lose heart and to carry on. To come to my Father unhindered, give him my life, and rest in his love.