Your Vessels

(Today’s prayer and devotion are from Mary Buhr)

Therefore, since we have this ministry, just as we received mercy [from God, granting us salvation, opportunities, and blessings], we do not get discouraged nor lose our motivation. But we have this precious treasure [the good news about salvation] in [unworthy] earthen vessels [of human frailty], so that the grandeur and surpassing greatness of the power will be [shown to be] from God [His sufficiency] and not from ourselves. Therefore we do not become discouraged [spiritless, disappointed, or afraid]. Though our outer self is [progressively] wasting away, yet our inner self is being [progressively] renewed day by day. For our momentary, light distress [this passing trouble] is producing for us an eternal weight of glory [a fullness] beyond all measure [surpassing all comparisons, a transcendent splendor and an endless blessedness]! So we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are unseen; for the things which are visible are temporal [just brief and fleeting], but the things which are invisible are everlasting and imperishable. 2 Corinthians 4:1, 7, 16-18 AMP

My husband and I were married in 2007. We were both 28, so didn’t want to wait too long before trying to start a family. But we didn’t know we would encounter two years of infertility. Evan’s birth was a miracle. We had been told after various testing that we would not be able to conceive without medical intervention. Because we both have a heart for adoption, we decided at that point to take time to pray and seek what avenue (fertility treatments, or adoption) God would have us pursue next. During that time of waiting, we conceived!

We named our son Evan Christopher. Evan is the Welsh form of John, which means “the Lord is gracious” or “gracious gift of Jehovah.” Christopher means “Christ bearer.” We chose these names to thank God for our miracle baby, and in prayer that his life would bring Christ to those he met.

Evan was born with cerebral palsy due to a probable stroke during pregnancy or delivery. We knew from pretty early on that he had some physical needs. He has been in occupational and physical therapy since he was ten months old. During his toddler years we started noticing some other behaviors and have pursued additional therapy and testing. He now has both an ADHD and autism diagnosis. He is six now and is really doing so wonderfully well. We praise God for the progress he has made. We know it is a lifelong journey and we will encounter new challenges all along the way. There are many things we would not choose to experience, or for him to have to struggle with, but we can see God’s hand in his life and in the way this journey is changing all of us.

There are so many verses I could choose as meaningful to me on this journey. God’s Word has truly been our bread. I chose these because I want to remember that what I may see as weakness, God can use as a strength. I also want to remember that I am a fragile, dusty jar of clay, just as Evan is.

We may put value on physical health or strength, or a “neurotypical” mind, but God sees what we cannot see, in how He will use our lives. I want my life and my son’s life to display God’s glory and power, and I want our lives to be lived for eternal value.

Dear Lord,

I thank You for the precious ministry You have entrusted to me in the care of my son. I pray that You would enable me to not become discouraged or to lose my motivation. I pray that I would remember the truths in these verses and submit to Your sovereign rule over our lives.

I pray these verses for my son, and for our family. I pray that Evan will see the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. I pray that his inner self would be renewed by the work of the Holy Spirit. I pray that You would continue to give us the tools and words needed to teach him Your truths, to communicate these eternal, important things to him in a way he can understand.

I pray that we will be vessels that display Your glory and power. I pray that both in moments of weakness, as well as moments of victory and overcoming, that it will be evident to others that our hope is in You, and that our strength comes from You alone.

I pray that the places human eyes may see as weak, or frail, or flawed, will be the very places Your glory shines through Evan the most. I thank You for creating Evan Christopher, this precious, perfect gift. I pray that his life will demonstrate and make evident Your gracious gifts, and that he will bear Christ to all who meet him. Thank You for Your loving, gracious gifts to us.

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