"But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us."
II Corinthians 4:7
There are people and ministries that I admire from a distance. Their examples inspire me in my walk with God. But I know that if I were to get close to them I'd find out they are imperfectly human just like me. Up close their flaws would be more evident. That reality is a comfort and encouragement to me. It means that God can still do great things through my life even though I am an "earthen vessel." It means I don't have to be perfect to be effective.
The glory of the gospel is that God reveals Himself through us, such imperfect creatures that we are. We have this treasure... His power is made perfect in our weakness.
I am a cracked pot. A broken vessel. I have been marred in the potter's hands. I have scars. I have "issues" I'm still trying to overcome. I still have struggles with weakness and battle temptations.
I am thankful for the people in my life who think of me more highly than they ought to. They praise me for the good things they see in my life. I need that encouragement cause I tend to get down on myself easily. For those closer to me, I am thankful that they overlook my flaws and still love me the way that I am. They have a more realistic view of the jar of clay that I am. Yet, they love me anyways, thank the Lord.
Jesus was the only perfect man. He will only always ever be the only perfect man. So we fix our eyes and our faith on the Perfect One. We worship Him in His perfect glory and our lives; our broken, scarred, tattered earthen vessels become a reflection of His glory for the world to see.