In The Storm

A storm was brewing—not just on the horizon but also in a friend’s home. “When I was in Hong Kong,” she shared, “the local meteorological service announced that there was a superstorm approaching. But more than the storm that was looming outside my window, there was a storm brewing at home. While my dad was in the hospital, family members were trying to balance their home and work responsibilities while also traveling to and from the hospital. They were so tired that patience was wearing thin, and the situation at home was tense.”

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Amazing Grace

Pressed into service in the Royal Navy, John Newton was dismissed for insubordination and turned to a career trafficking in slaves. Notorious for cursing and blasphemy, Newton served on a slave ship during the cruelest days of trans-Atlantic slavery, finally working his way up to captain.

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Every Hardship

Like many towns, Enterprise, Alabama, has a prominent monument. But the monument in Enterprise is unlike any other. The statue doesn’t recognize a leading citizen; it celebrates the work of a beetle. In the early 1900s, this boll weevil made its way from Mexico to the southern US. Within a few years it had destroyed entire crops of cotton, the primary source of revenue. In desperation, farmers started growing another crop—peanuts. Realizing they had been dependent on one crop for too long, they credited the beetle with forcing them to diversify, which led to increased prosperity.

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Not Even A Nod

Traffic was bad and everyone was cranky on that hot afternoon. I noticed a car with two young men waiting to enter traffic from a fast-food restaurant driveway. I thought it was nice when the driver ahead of me let them in.

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A Picture Of Humility

During the Easter season, my wife and I attended a church service where the participants sought to model the events that Jesus and His disciples experienced on the night before He was crucified. As part of the service, the church staff members washed the feet of some of the church volunteers. As I watched, I wondered which was more humbling in our day—to wash another person’s feet or to have someone else wash yours. Both those who were serving and those being served were presenting distinct pictures of humility.

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Memory Loss

Sometimes when we face times of trouble, we may get spiritual amnesia and forget the grace of God. But a good way of reestablishing a thankful heart is to set aside undistracted time and deliberately remember God’s past provisions for us and give thanks.

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Example That Encourages

The story is told that in the late 1800s a group of European pastors attended D. L. Moody’s Bible conference in Massachusetts. Following their custom, they put their shoes outside their room before they slept, expecting them to be cleaned by hotel workers. When Moody saw the shoes, he mentioned the need to others because he knew their custom. But he was met with silence. Moody collected all the shoes and cleaned them himself. A friend who made an unexpected visit to his room revealed what Moody had done. The word spread, and the next few nights others took turns doing the cleaning.

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The Upright Thumb

According to an African fable, four fingers and a thumb lived together on a hand. They were inseparable friends. One day, they noticed a gold ring lying next to them and conspired to take it. The thumb said it would be wrong to steal the ring, but the four fingers called him a self-righteous coward and refused to be his friend. That was just fine with the thumb; he wanted nothing to do with their mischief. This is why, the legend goes, the thumb still stands separate from the other fingers.

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Difficult People

In the book God in the Dock, author C. S. Lewis describes the kind of people we have trouble getting along with. Selfishness, anger, jealousy, or other quirks often sabotage our relationship with them. We sometimes think, Life would be much easier if we didn’t have to contend with such difficult people.

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Broken But Beautiful

Recently, my daughter showed me her collection of sea glass. Also known as beach glass, the varied bits of colored glass are sometimes pieces of pottery but often they are pieces of shattered glass bottles. Originally the glass had a purpose, but then it was casually thrown away and became broken.

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23 thoughts on “Broken But Beautiful

  1. marshapriskila says:

    This devotion shows me that God never leaves us no matter how many times we made mistakes. Praise the Lord! God bless you all <3

  2. everglo says:

    August 6, 2014
    the potter
    Thank you Lord for molding me into the vessel that you want me to be. May You daily mold me into what I should be. For you to do this I need to be moldable. Thou art the Potter I am the clay.

  3. hope.more says:

    i don’t know if i completely missed the point of the passage or not. Indeed, the devotion is a nice read and all the comments and I agree that we are being fashioned by God everyday. But I think, the passage does not in any way compare the glass being fashioned by the Potter to an individual – not even the whole people of Israel. Contextually, the glasses are the plans of God. In the succeeding verses, (Jer 18:11) it says, “Look, I am fashioning evil against you and making a plan”. Anyway, the devotion and the comments is still a good read :)

  4. sandy229 says:

    Praise God for today’s devotion. God bless you all.

  5. xs says:

    I went on YouTube to refresh how a potter handles the was amazing to watch…. thinking to myself that this is how God holds and molds us soo carefully and what is even more amazing is the end product. I will continue to trust my Potter….and I encourage you all to do the same. Amen

  6. godsgirlkarin says:

    We are never too badly broken for God to reshape. He loves us in spite of our imperfections and past mistakes, and He desires to make us beautiful. I love this.

  7. acquayegh says:

    Thank you for your comments. I do appreciate them.
    As you clearly indicated by His Love for us in creating us in His own image, He has given us the freedom to choose our response to any stimulus using His free gift of self-awareness, imagination, conscience and independent will.
    As “clay”, therefore, with a difference in God’s hands, we as believers and even those in unbelieving status should indeed stop frustrating God in molding us to live right. We need to “believe the gospel right” though in order to “live right.”
    You put it in a better perspective as “Unlike the clay, we get to decide whether or not we will cooperate with the Potter. We soon learn that it suits us not to resist Him. After all, He is not the only one who benefits from our beauty. We do.” Thank you. And to all contributors and Our Daily Bread team – Have a Christ Centered Day.

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