Why being you is better than being me

Potters hands making clay potHave you ever wished you were like someone else?  Prettier, skinnier, stronger, or even wished you had talents and gifts like them?  I have.  I’ve wished I was quieter and more gentle-natured and I’ve wished I was more like my sister.  She has all those qualities I aspire to.

I heard this story that is simple, profound, and I have never forgotten it.

Two clay water jugs belonged to a family who lived in a little hut in an arid land.  The jugs were nothing alike.  One was beautiful – and perfect.  The other was well used, cracked, and continually leaked.  But each day, the water-bearer picked up her two clay water jugs and trekked a long way to the water hole.

She filled her two jugs to the brim and slowly made her way back to her hut and her waiting family.  And as usual, by the time she got back, the damaged clay jug was empty and put on the shelf until the following day.  It sadly watched as the beautiful clay jug was placed on the table and the water it held was enjoyed by a loving family.

The daily routine was always the same.  The little cracked jug watched and wishing it was like the beautiful perfect jug, and couldn’t understand why it had to endure the same sad routine every day.  Why wasn’t it thrown away?  It felt useless.  It had no purpose.  It just wished, with all it’s might, it was the other jug.

It couldn’t take it anymore!  So it asked the water-bearer “Why do you take me to the water hole every day, when I am broken, I leak and can’t hold any water?  Every day when we come home I am empty.  I am useless.”

The water-bearer lovingly picked up her broken jug, hugging it closely as she walked to the hut opening.  She faced the jug towards the path that led all the way to the water hole.  One side of the path was lined with the most amazing and beautiful flowers, and other people in the village were looking at the flowers and smelling them.  These flowers were the most beautiful things in the village.  She said “Do you see those beautiful flowers that line the path?  Every day when I walk back from the water hole, it is you who waters those flowers.  It is because of you that we have the most beautiful flowers in all the land.  Your job isn’t to bring water to the family table, it is to bring life to our village.  You are special in a different way.  That’s your unique purpose, and you are beautifully and wonderfully made.

I apologise that I can’t recall where I heard this story, so I can’t give credit where it is due.  But I believe that if you are reading this post, you may need to hear it – to give you hope and inspiration.  Whether it’s Karma, or the Universe, or God (or whoever you believe in) speaking to you, this one’s for you – to remind you that you are uniquely and wonderfully made, and have a purpose.

This is why being you is better than being me.  

©  2015 CEW

Shocked by the amazing MIRACLE HEALING!

This is a true story about praying for my son just to “shut him up”. What happened next shocked us both …

Angel praying on kneesWhen my son was 11 years old he hurt his ankle quite badly. The doctor sent him for X-rays fearing it was broken, but it was severely sprained. It was his second day home from school, and my second day home from work looking after him. He and I are not good at sitting still, and even worse when we feel like caged animals. We were like bears with sore heads. It was only a matter of time before one of us ran out of patience with the other.

Due to intense boredom, I cooked us all a steak for dinner. In case you are wondering, I am renowned for not being a good cook.  (See my post The Sausage Casserole that was banned for life! for proof.) I hadn’t cooked steak in over 10 years, but I was older and wiser now; surely it couldn’t be too hard, could it?

It was; the steak was a disaster. And truth be known, even I had sore jaws after sawing through it! But son’s patience was up. It started with “Mum, I have a sore tooth.” Then, “Mum, I HAVE A SORE TOOTH!” I replied “Try using dental floss” and “Go brush your teeth”. He went on, and on, and on; as did I. I was trying to load the dishwasher and his harping was severely grating on my nerves. Finally I exploded “WHAT DO YOU WANT ME TO DO ABOUT IT?”

He raised his voice right back at me and said “WELL … YOU COULD TRY USING YOUR JESUS HANDS!” “Fine. Go down to my bedroom. I’ll be there in a minute.” He literally hopped down the hallway, trying not to let his sore foot touch the floor.  I really should have gotten him crutches.

I chuckled to myself “Jesus hands? Where did he learn that?” In fact, it really tickled my fancy. You see, I am the only Christian in my home. My husband and sons are not on that journey with me. Yet. But they know that I love to go to Church and pray for others, and they have seen me pray for people, including them, when they have needed it. It seemed son needed it now. I certainly was not going to refuse.

I met him in my bedroom and lovingly cupped his face within my hands. We both closed our eyes, and for a few minutes, I prayed out loud. I must admit, my prayer really sounded quite good, even to me. It sounded like real poetry! Anyway, my prayer finished and I asked him “How does your tooth feel?”

Old statue of Mary and baby JesusHe prodded and poked, opened his jaw, closed it again, put his angry eyebrows into action and said “IT’S STILL SORE! That’d be right! Healing doesn’t work!” He was not impressed. Oh well, thought I, I’m not magic, if he hasn’t been healed, it’s not my fault.

He stormed out of my room and stomped up the hallway. I ran to my open bedroom door and looked at him, completely stunned. I yelled at him “STOP!” He stopped and turned to look at me. I had the biggest grin on my face imaginable. He said “What?”

“What’s happened to your ankle?”

He marched on the spot. He looked down at his feet. He walked up and down the hallway a few steps. He jumped up and down. “It’s healed.”

I looked quite cocky. I couldn’t help it. “Oh, healing doesn’t work does it?”

He stuttered … “Well, Well … I didn’t ask Him for that, did I?” And off he stormed again.

I couldn’t stop smiling all day.

The lesson I learned that day:
When God answers our prayers, he gives us what we need, even more than what we want. Sometimes he gives us what we haven’t even asked for.  If we just step out and pray for others, we don’t need to worry about “sounding” like a prayer warrior, or like a poet, or be amazingly articulate.  We are just called to step out. Pray.  He will do the rest.  I need not feel prayer pressure ever again.

©2015 CEW


An Aunt’s Reflection

3 hearts on clotheslineI am their Aunt.

I watched; as they grew inside their mother’s womb. I’d put my hand on her stomach and feel them move. I’d smile.

A boy. He was battered and bruised from a traumatic birth.   I watched his cousins say “he’s beautiful” to his Mum. I told them not to mention his injuries as they’d hurt his Mum’s feelings. I saw; the creation of a new mother’s love come into being.

A girl. I watched; as she entered the world and was gently placed on her mother’s stomach. She cried when she looked upon her tiny daughter.

I watched; when they were 2 and 3 years old and their dad left their Mum. Who would have known they’d grow up in a single parent household. Not I. Not anyone.

I watched; as their Mum struggled to bring them both up, on her own when they were so little. I watched; as she went back to work and put them in childcare so she could keep paying the bills. And I held her when she cried; because she didn’t plan for them not to have a dad living in the same house, like most of their friends had.

I was there for their first day of school. I watched; as they walked through the gate, struggling to hold those big school bags on their backs.

I watched their tantrums and I went to their home to be the “tough” one when they were giving their Mum a hard time. They could be little terrors at times! I heard; when then called me “The Commando”.

I watched; as the doctor told their Mum she had cancer. And I watched over them in the hospital as she had surgery. It was a tough year.

I watched a little girl; struggling with a big vacuum cleaner to try and help her Mum clean the house. I watched a little boy, who would lean close to his Mum when she slept, not wanting to wake her, but just making sure she was still breathing. I watched; as they both went through things that no child should ever have to go through.

But do you know what I’ve seen with all of my watching?

He – is one incredible and amazing young man. He has so much integrity and I’m proud of the man he is becoming. He is only 15, but he seems so much older. A true gentle-man. A man any young woman would be proud to take home and introduce to her parents.

She – is not just my niece, she is “my sister”. A 14 year old young woman, a nurturer, who cares about others with amazing empathy and compassion that most girls her age do not possess. She is beautiful and witty, smart and intelligent. Her heart for social justice and what is right is so powerful in such a young woman.

But I don’t just watch them. I pray for them; I encourage them; and I am one of their most ardent supporters. But more than anything.

I love them. I am their Aunt.

©2015 CEW

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