I’m a Broken Clay Jar

Years ago I heard a sermon wherein the Preach describe every human being as a ‘cracked pot.’ Being a ‘trained’ theologian, I immediately thought of a broken Greek amphora jar, the tallish, oblong shaped vessel often used to carry water and wine in the ancient world.

That’s how I view myself – a broken amphora jar – one that I take to bed every night, that I wake up with every morning. Sometimes I can ‘put it back together,’ and get on with life.

Once it is together – not repaired, because it can never be repaired — it will hold because the external pressure is equal to the internal pressure. Those are the days that I am at my best.

These internal/external pressures are nothing like the ‘compartmentalizing’ I once was so good at in my youth. In fact, I learned to compartmentalize as a child, getting better at it as I got older until one day, like a series of dominoes, the walls holding all that stuff I had stowed away over a lifetime, toppled.

Since then, I’ve been unable to hide my real self from anyone, especially myself. Thus, everyday I struggle to put my jar back together and make it through, from one sunrise to the next.

Sometimes though, I can’t put it back together and no matter how much I try, I keep losing pieces of this jar until I am holding nothing more than shard on top of shard. These are also the days that I ask God for the most help getting it together – figuratively and literally.

Where is this coming from? I posted on my social media page about ‘life seeming hopeless.’ Evidently, I frightened a lot of my friends as they believed I was contemplating suicide.

Rest assured, nothing like that crossed my mind. I needed help and so I reached out the best way I knew and then getting involved in something else, I forgot about my posting and went to bed.

Anyhow…

Often I am in tune with my Creator and he guides my clumsy fingers and together we get the job done. Other time, I am a scrambled mess and cannot get beyond my own thoughts and feelings to listen and the jar never gets put back together for that day or longer.

On those days, I usually “fake it, till I make it.” Be of good cheer, because as we’re instructed, if God’s for us, who can stand against us…right?

Anyway, because I’m only a man, I cannot withstand the brokeness of myself as I sit around trying to pick up all the broken shard’s of my clay jar. Those are the days, I wanna run away, withdraw, hide from everyone, everything, myself.

Generally, I do exactly that. But recently it’s been brought to my attention that others might be suffering in silence, feeling and thinking the same as me – after all I’m not alone in this world.  So with that in my crowded head, I’ve had to force myself to admit that “I ain’t alright,” that I’m hurting, that my clay jar is fallen apart and I’m simply too tired to pick the pieces up, let alone haul them around.

After my posting, I awoke and read many more stories that are far worse than mine, having realized that I offered up a complaint, but came with no solution. I’m ashamed for having complained at the moment, humbled by the fact that others are struggling in ways I cannot image.

Maybe none of what I write makes sense, maybe it all makes perfect sense. I won’t know if you don’t say anything and you can’t know if I don’t say something.

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