Cracked Pots, Trusting God with Our Weaknesses

I will never speak in public again, I promised myself—and God—and climbed behind the wheel of my car. I was leaving a daylong training where I had been one of the speakers. I had spoken on something dear to me, and my emotions showed. I didn’t want to cry in front of a room full of high school students and professional youth workers. Knowing the sensitive part of my talk was coming magnified my nervousness.

“Do you think I have the power to change you?” I sensed God interrupt my distress.

Of course God could change me. I didn’t understand why He hadn’t.

“Have you ever asked Me to change you?” He continued.

Many times!

The next thought stunned me, “Did you ever think I want you this way?”

I wiped my eyes, Lord, why would You want me to be like this? I want people to hear the message, not feel sorry for the nervous wreck behind the podium.

God reminded me, His glory shines through cracked pots. Was I willing to expose my cracks so God’s glory could shine? Or was I more concerned about my image?

This was not going like I wanted. I wanted to hear, “Debbie, you will never feel nervous or uncomfortable again.” Instead I heard my weaknesses are part of His plan.

I took a deep breath. Lord, if this is Your will for me, then I submit to it. This is not what I want. But I will accept how you have made me—deep feelings, nerves, and all, but please let them remember Your glory and not my cracks when they leave.

God’s peace flooded my heart. He gave me the grace to focus on allowing Jesus to shine through me instead of worrying about how well I performed or whether my emotions cooperated or not.

Decades later, I still recall this lesson. I ask God to control my emotions when I am going to share on a topic that touches me, but I have grown to accept the way I’m wired.

Ironically, this weekend the young woman who sat next to me after I spoke asked, “How do you do that?”

“What?” I asked.

“Speak to all these people and stay so calm. I want to do that.”

I had to smile at God’s grace. I had been calm, but I had also been surprised at the emotion I experienced in my concluding story. But instead of turning people off, my audience shared my feelings. God used my weakness for His glory.

“And He has said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.’ Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me,” (2 Corinthians 12:9, NASB).

How have you experienced God’s grace and power in your weaknesses? What weakness do you want to surrender to Him today? Will you trust Him to be glorified in your weaknesses?


Debbie Wilson

Deborah W. Wilson

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  1. Ann Musico

    Most definitely, Debbie! That is such a transparent and touching post and I can fully relate! I have felt so inadequate – particularly in speaking before groups, which I’ve only done a few times. I also know that the way we experience it from the inside out is not the same way people watching/listening experience it – by the grace of God. The first time I spoke to a parent group there was one man who just stared at me without ever showing any emotion or interest. I began the talk saying I had never done this before and wasn’t a speaker. The entire time my mind was reeling with thoughts that he was going to tell me it was the worst talk he’d ever been to and to give it up. I had asked God to give me the words and to speak through me but I was pretty sure I somehow messed that up. At the end of the talk he stood up and I cringed. He said – You said you are not a speaker but this was the best parenting talk I’ve ever been too – and he led the group in a standing ovation. While it was no where near great – God was able to use me inspite of myself.

    I share that just to say – how I was feeling had more to do with my false thinking about myself. I have been working since then in renewing my mind to the truth of how God sees me. I am MUCH more willing to allow God to use me in the unique way He’s created me – flaws, cracks and all knowing all glory goes to Him. Great post.

    • Debbie

      Ann, thanks for sharing your wonderful story. It reminds me of a time when someone in an audience looked angry the whole time I spoke. Years later she recognized me at an event and told me I probably didn’t remember her, but when I spoke the Lord was working on her. God had used my message to set her free from a destructive habit. Glory to God. Your story is a good reminder that we can’t judge our performance by our listeners’ expressions. I can always use that reminder. 🙂

  2. stephanie sudano

    i so love your blog and the reminder that God uses us “especially” when we are not perfect…what a great promise.

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