I was spring-cleaning with a friend the other day. While reaching into the recesses of the cupboard, she accidentally dropped a cup. It didn’t shatter, but the fall to the counter was enough to cause a crack. I wondered whether to save it but in the end decided to trash it.
God, on the other hand, saves broken cups. In fact, broken vessels are often his most useful tools. The verse for today reads like his fix-it manual. It tells us God pours his treasure into fragile vessels that are prone to shatter. That way everyone will know God is doing the living in us.
A broken neck has taught me this. But so has a broken heart. At times, whether in my paralysis pain or emotional pain, I have gone to God, sighing and saying, “I give up. I can’t do anything right. I have no idea how to pull myself out of this mess.” The world would say, “Yep, you’re useless.” The Devil would say, “Told you so.” But God says, “I’ve been waiting for you to come to me in your brokenness. Here, let me heal you. You need my help, for without me you can do nothing.”
What’s more, Psalm 51:17 tells us God will only use a life that is broken: “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.”
Don’t be ashamed of being shattered. God is looking for broken vessels like you through whom he can showcase his splendor. Remember, when it comes to God’s grace, even broken cups can be filled to overflowing.
Joni Eareckson Tada, More Precious than Silver: 366 Daily Devotional Readings (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2010).