“So I went down to the potter’s house,
and there he was, working away at the wheel.
But the jar that he was making from the clay
became flawed in the potter’s hand,
so he made it into another jar, as it seemed right for him to do.
The word of the LORD came to me: ‘House of Israel,
can I not treat you as this potter treats his clay?’ —
this is the LORD’s declaration.
‘Just like clay in the potter’s hand,
so are you in My hand, house of Israel.'”
“A good thing is never made in a hurry,” said Great Woman in Lois Lenski’s Indian Captive: The Story of Mary Jemison as she instructed impatient Corn Tassel how a slower, more loving process leads to a more beautiful, valuable, and sturdy pot.
I identify with Corn Tassel’s impatience of the process. I can be a petulant child when it comes to God’s forming me and molding me to be more like Him. I long and pray to be made more like Jesus, but I want it to be immediate. I don’t like the life-long, painful process.
Certainly He can do it in a moment, but His slower, more loving process is better as He gradually increases Himself in us and decreases our self-centeredness.
We can be so rigid with our way and our plans for our lives. As our Potter works to make us pliable enough to shape to His will, we rebel and cry out, “No! No! No! Not that way. That curve needs to be straightened. That section doesn’t need to be shaved off. I will yet burst from the pain!”
“You have turned things around,
as if the potter were the same as the clay.
How can what is made say about its maker,
“He didn’t make me”?
How can what is formed
say about the one who formed it,
‘He doesn’t understand what he’s doing’?”
I continually kick against the Potter’s way and don’t trust that I’m in the best hands I can be in. He knows perfectly what He is doing and He knows best how to shape me into a vessel that will hold and pour out His glory. Oh, how glad I am that He is so infinitely patient with me!
There are so many processes in life that never benefit us by trying to hurry them along. We want immediate fixes and visual evidences of a positive result. We want God to instantly answer our prayers and grant us our desires, but we don’t realize that His refusal or waiting does us more good than immediate affirmation. Many of the things we ask for, either for ourselves or others, aren’t even good for us or them.
It’s so hard not to fight against the process God uses to mold us or our loved ones, isn’t it? To trust in His all-knowing, skillful hands? To trust His process and timing to make us more beautiful, valuable, and usable vessels of His glory?
“Thank You, O Precious Potter, for counting us worth creating and molding, for caring for us so lovingly and freely with Your full attention on each and every one of us. Make us willing in Your hands and help us to trust You with the process of bringing us closer to You. Sometimes we can hurt so much, but help us to trust that any pain allowed in our lives serves to mold us to be more like You. To love, nurture, and understand others more like You do. So many are wounded and weary, Lord, but all power belongs to You. Remember each wounded spirit. Touch us with Your grace. Heal the deep layers of pain in each of us. Fill us with Your Spirit so that all will see that You are living in us! Make us pliable in Your All-knowing, Almighty hands and form us into vessels of Your grace and glory. Thank You, Jesus, for sacrificing Your life for us! Thank You for Your all-sufficient grace and complete forgiveness and unconditional love!”
“To me, the form and shape of my life look irreparable.
To the Potter?
He sees an opportunity to show off His best work.
All of it is redeemable.
The impossible and imperfect, the broken and beat up.
Nothing is wasted in His expert hands
as He remakes us into something beautiful.”
Michele Cushatt (I Am Book)
“The Potter’s Hand”