Toiling. Striving. Pain. Tears. Every human being feels it, the broken earth beneath our feet. Purposelessness. Hopelessness. Horror. Shame. Every human feels it, the broken heart between our lungs. And we yearn for that moment of completion, that happy ending. So we thrust ourselves into the world, with a broken pail in our hands and a sign saying "fill me up." Each person comes and pours water into the pail. It seems to rise and rise, and you feel complete for a moment. Then, you see at your feet, a muddled puddle of your dreams and desires and hopes and loves. Your pail is empty. A useless vessel.
That's what I've been. I've been searching for others to fill me. To make that pail full so that all my dreams can come true. That maybe for once I can forget my past and love my present and be content with the future. Instead, all I feel is emptiness. The world has been my guide, and I've listened and obeyed and loved it. I've fallen. I've been an empty vessel.
I lay down in my puddle of brokenness, consumed in shame and loneliness and sorrow. And for once in my life, I see how much I need a hero. I need a savior. Because I can't handle my own life and my own decisions. I need someone who will love me with every hypocritical mistake I've made and continue to make. Who won't pass judgment. Who won't cast me aside. Who won't abandon me. Who won't strip me naked. Who won't manipulate me. Who won't ask for anything in return. Who won't hold me hostage. Who won't hate me.
And I realize that I've traded in the most precious and beautiful love for an empty pail. So I fall to the ground again, not in shame, but in utter repentance, hoping and praying that all those promises and all those stories are true of the one who can bring about restoration. I weep and weep for all things lost. Because I think how can he love me? How can he possibly take me as I am? This gaping wound and this tormented soul of a lost sheep.I see now more than ever before that I chose my path, that I chose my decisions, that I chose what comes next. I've allowed circumstances to define me. I've reacted out of bitterness and pride and lust, and I can't keep my perfect world in order because it was never in order to begin with. There is a certain kind of grace, a type of forgiveness that covers all things. It is this that I pray for, that I fall on my face for, and that I need more than any other thing in this world. I know now that this grace, this forgiveness is the only thing that can mend and sew back together the horrors of the broken heart. And I wonder and hope that he loves me in spite of it all. You are not alone. If you're in the pit, holding your empty pail, and yearning for love and purpose in this life, know that I am right there with you. As are 7 billion other people. We all need grace. No matter how perfect you think you are. Now matter how perfect I thought I was. I've fell, fall, and will fall. Which is precisely why I need a saviour, why I need Jesus. And I remember again, way deep down in my heart of hearts, in that tormented soul of mine, that I am loved by him despite it all. And I say it again and again. He loves me. He loved me; he loves me, and he will always love me.
And in time, I find in my hands not an empty pail, but a cup overflowing.