We have three sets of dishes in our house: the set I registered for before I got married, a Tuscan looking stoneware set, and the set we use every day, Correlle.

We use the fine china once or twice a year, if that. It spends most of the time in a cherry hutch my mother gave me. The set is complete and undamaged save one dinner plate my husband dropped a couple of years ago.

The stoneware set is used more often–if we have company over for dinner. I also use separate pieces from the set to serve appetizers on when we have casual get togethers. This set is complete and undamaged.

The Correlle set we use every day, for each meal–bowls for cereal, plates for lunch and dinner. I even use the platters to defrost big stuff in the microwave. That set? Lots of pieces missing from that one.

When we lose one of those pieces to slippery or careless hands, you wouldn’t think it would be a big loss. I can go to Walmart and replace whatever happens to break. It’s common and inexpensive, easily accessible and replaceable. It’s also the hardest working set of dishes in the house. Correlle Ware is lightweight and stands up to daily use and abuse. I will readily admit I don’t give these dishes a second thought. They are there for me every day. Not terribly attractive or impressive, but a constant in our daily lives.

I mentioned before that you wouldn’t ¬†think losing one of these pieces would be a big deal, but that’s not the case. It’s a very big deal. Because, as anyone who has tile floors and Correlle Ware can attest to, they don’t just break when they’re dropped–they shatter into pieces. These tiny pieces travel great distances across the expanse of the tile floor. When a cup, bowl or plate is dropped, everyone is cleared out of the kitchen. If I’m not wearing shoes, I get a pair on immediately. Those tiny slivers cut through skin like tiny daggers.

The dog’s bowls are emptied and washed, the entire floor is first swept then vacuumed. But despite the effort made to assure all the pieces are swept up and thrown away, there have been instances where a bare foot finds a tiny shard that was missed–sometimes days later. They seem to get into the dark crevices and go undetected.

I don’t really understand why anyone would design dishes that are made for regular use and abuse, and yet be susceptible to complete and utter destruction when dropped by a careless hand. So strong and resilient, and yet so fragile.

Have you ever felt like a Correlle dish? Willing to weather daily use and abuse, being taken for ¬†granted day after day, only to shatter into a million pieces when carelessly dropped, swept up and discarded? If this sounds like an object lesson for your life–past or present–may I tell you something?

You need to know that there are probably hidden shards hiding in the dark places, seemingly undetected, that can and will hurt those who get close to you. But more importantly: You are not a cheap dish. You are not common or inexpensive, easily accessible or replaceable.

You are a beautiful piece of fine pottery, fearfully and wonderfully made.

And you may have been broken or even shattered, but the Master Potter, the One who lovingly formed you, desires to gather up all the pieces of your shattered self and put you back together. Not as good as new, but infinitely better.

Because you are His masterpiece.

This post is part of the One Word at a Time Blog Carnival: Broken, hosted by my friend . Please visit his site for a list of many wonderful posts on this topic.

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