We are the light of the world, the city set on a hill, the ones to whom God has shone in our hearts and given us the light of the gospel. While all this may sound prestigious and noble, our calling is actually rather humble. Paul was used mightily by the Lord because he understood this concept and fully accepted his role with humility, faithfulness, and gratefulness. He wrote in II Corinthians 4:7:
“But we have this treasure [the light of the gospel] in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.”
“Treasure in jars of clay.” We hear this phrase a lot and are very familiar with this beautiful analogy, but do we truly understand what Paul is saying? Do we fully embrace our humble position as God’s light bearers? Take a minute to ponder and meditate on what “treasure in jars of clay” really means.
We are mere vessels that carry God’s treasure. We ourselves are nothing great or spectacular, just clay jars, but it’s the treasure within us that sets us apart. God is the One who ought to receive all the glory and honor, because it’s His power and greatness that is at work within us. We are earthen vessels, humble clay pots, and lowly servants of the King of Kings. Our value and worth is not found in who or what we are, our outward appearance, or our stature and size, but rather our importance comes from what we carry, what has been placed inside of us, and what we have been entrusted with.
Not many people put their treasure in humble clay pots, but God did. He chose to put inside of us the hope of the world. This is no light thing. We carry within us the treasure of the Almighty, Sovereign Maker of the universe. What an amazing gift! But at the same time, we are still mere earthen vessels. So while the treasure placed within us is invaluable, we, the containers, must humbly remember that we are not worthy to carry divine treasure. This is the humbleness of our calling, that we—clay pots, earthen vessels—should be entrusted with God’s priceless treasure.
But why? Why would God do this? Paul gives us the answer: “to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.”
May God receive all the glory! And may we walk in humility knowing that we are mere jars of clay of no importance or value on our own, and yet we contain within us the hope of the world. What a high, yet humble calling, indeed!
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