Fingering the delicate papers, I gently placed them on the counter in a copy center. So old and precious, these folded sheets of time-worn paper cradled treasures of our family history. Treasures too sacred for me to carry to a self-serve machine. They needed to be entrusted to one who knew the art of handling precious pieces of one’s life, placing them ever so carefully on the glass of the copier, selecting just the right intensity of ink to reproduce these words on crisp white paper for others to read.
When the copies were completed, the kind gentleman met the fragile look in my eyes and thoughtfully touched the papers to the counter. Once again my fingers caressed the edges of these paper treasures and slowly tucked them into my manila folder.
How stark and out of place appeared those crisp copies of my treasures. No background color defined the age. The scrolled borders mere black lines. The copied handwriting void of personality. The copies held no comparison to the original vessels carrying our family history. I grieved within because my cousin would not behold the original treasure.
The words had not changed though, I realized. The story not diminished. The treasure found in the written word remained.
Similarly, we are like those crisp copies. Just that. Copies of the original God who made us. Lackluster in appearance yet full of the Truth, reflecting His glory.
“But, we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.”