A cracked bucket

February 24, 2012 4:45 pm

A water bearer had two buckets to bring water from the river to his master’s house. The buckets were hanging on both ends of the pole that he carried across his shoulders. One of them was cracked, the other – was perfectly fine. The bucket with no trace of a crack – conscious of its excellence – was proud of itself. The cracked bucket – ashamed of its crack – suffered.

One day the cracked bucket confessed its misery to the water bearer. “Because of my crack you carried so much less water to your master’s house every day than I could have hold if I was unbroken” – it said. The man ponited to beautiful flowers, sparkling with colour, only on one side of the road, and replied: “The flowers grow on this side of the road, and not on the other, do they? I saw your crack and I made a good use of it. I sowed the seeds on your side of the path. Each day, as we were going back from the river, they drank the water leaking from you. For two years I have picked the floweres and beutified my master’s house with them. We wouldn’t have been able to give so much beauty to the house if it hadn’t been for the way you are”*

Even though I am like that cracked bucket, I know that the One who is carrying me is not discouraged by my crack. He is not complaining about water being “wasted”, he is not worried by my effectiveness – so much below the human standards of productivity. I know that He can take advantage of my cracks and defects, if only I place them on His shoulders. Because He, as nobody else, “causes all things to work together for the good to those who love Him” (Romans 8:28).

Basia

*You can find the story in its full version in I. Holler, Porozumienie bez przemocy. Ćwiczenia. (Nonviolent Communication. Practice.)

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