Giving Our Lives Into the Potter’s Hands

“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.'”
Jeremiah 18:3-6

“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’?”
Isaiah 29:16

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”
by Hillsong

No Giant Is Too Big For God


Do you sometimes feel like you are battling giants? Like you’re constantly retreating? Like you’re just too weary to fight anymore?

There can be so many giants in our lives, can’t there? I can’t begin to name them all, but two biggies for me this past week were discouragement and fear.

It’s hard not to be discouraged when the continuing battle of chronic illness gets me down. My body attracts bugs so easily, so I often catch the viruses flying around. They usually succeed to wreak havoc in my bronchial tubes. My husband came down with a nasty one the week before, and I begged God to please keep me from getting sick again. He had different plans. But even as I knew it was starting in my body, I felt God whispering, “My child, haven’t you asked me to deepen your trust in Me? Let go and surrender your way into My way of making it happen.” Sometimes God doesn’t give us our way, but He helps us to have peace with the plan He chooses.

Then there’s this year’s presidential election. Discouragement and fear looms in many hearts. Many have been belittled and trampled upon. Deep hurts remain in women, minorities, and the vulnerable like the handicapped, etc. People who need to be loved, respected, and accepted just as they are. People who need grace, support, and healing. People who are just as precious in God’s sight as the next person.

Our hearts may droop in discouragement and freeze with fear. But God is still in control of the giants in our way. We are never alone. We have God on our side, and He will never, ever fail or abandon us! So let’s keep moving forward, one step at a time. Remembering that God cares about each and every one of His unique creations.

What giants are looming over you and intimidating you? Taunting you with lies that victory is impossible? Blocking the way forward in the path God has chosen for you?

“You keep track of all my sorrows.
You have collected all my tears in Your bottle.
You have recorded each one in Your book.
My enemies will retreat when I call to You for help.
This I know: God is on my side!”
Psalm 56:8-9

David said to the Philistine,
“You come against me with sword and spear and javelin,
but I come against you in the name of the Almighty,
the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.”
1 Samuel 17:45

“So be strong and courageous!
Do not be afraid and do not panic before them.
For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you.
He will neither fail you nor abandon you.”
Deuteronomy 31:6

Lord, You are Almighty and You are still in control, no matter what happens in our hearts, our lives, our world. But oh, Lord, sometimes we get so discouraged, so worried, so afraid. We cry to You for help, because anything is possible with You. Help us to truly believe You have already gained the victory over the giants of sin and death and Satan, and no giant in our lives is too big for You. You know the giants in each of our hearts, some hidden from human eye, but never from You. Thank You for loving us so much and counting it a delight to care for us. Please remove all uncharitable thoughts from our hearts. Help us to treat others with love and kindness as You have treated us. Help us to trust in Your love and power and grant healing in each of hearts.

“Giants Fall”
by Francisca Battistelli

“Don’t you be afraid
Of giants in your way
With God you know that anything’s possible
So step into the fight
He’s right there by your side
The stones inside your hand might be small
But watch the giants fall

We could really live like this
Can’t you imagine it
So bold, so brave
With childlike faith
Miracles could happen
Mountains would start moving
So whatever you may face…”



Rainbow of Hope


Rainbows proclaim hope. An assurance that God will always keep His promises. A confirmation that He is with us even in the darkest of times. A sign of His faithful love and care over us always and forever.

Over twenty years ago, shortly after I finally admitted to myself I was abused many years earlier and I began to deal with it, I went to a retreat for those who were victims of clergy abuse.

When I walked through the doors, I wanted to turn around and run back to my car and go home. Shame, fear, and hopelessness consumed me.

Then I saw her standing at the windows covering one wall. A nun staring out the window. As she stood there, a rainbow broke through the stormy clouds and brightened the sky.

The rainbow drew me to the window next to her. We were hushed with awe for several minutes.

Then she whispered, “I asked God for a sign.”

She shared her story of abuse by a priest and how afraid she was to be there. But God confirmed to her through the rainbow that she was where He wanted her to be.

This glorious rainbow inspired in both of us hope that God was on our side, He always keeps His promises, and He will never, ever abandon us.

Those days were gut-wrenching as we worked through the unspeakable pain of sexual and spiritual abuse from clergymen. I probably didn’t get as much benefit out of it as I could have if I had dared to open up more, but God still boosted me on the road to healing.

Two women pastors led the retreat, and on the final day, they held communion to whoever wanted to join them. Love, acceptance, and support warmed the atmosphere. One woman stood rooted to the floor several feet away. Her pain was so deep, and she wasn’t sure she belonged. Could she trust the love Jesus offers? Did He even want her? We gathered around her with love and assurance and God crumbled her defensive veneer. She stepped forward with us, and with tears flowing, we remembered how Jesus offered up His broken body and poured out His life blood for us.

I was still in deep pain but I had a renewed hope that God held us in His loving hands. Even though the healing journey would be painful, He would be with us every step of the way. And He has been, even though there were countless times when I felt like He had abandoned me. In hindsight I can see He was there even in those dark times of despair.

As one of the projects, each of us had a piece of construction paper with our name written in the middle of it and uplifting stickers on it. We were to write an encouragement or praise on everyone’s page. After we went home, the leaders sent our page to us. I still have it.

As I reread all the kind remarks, there is one that I want to pass on to you:

“Keep talking. Don’t allow Satan to take anymore from you than he has. You know where your power lies. In the Creator of the universe, the Creator of you. Call on His healing. He loves you, (insert your name here), and so do I.”

If you have been abused, in whatever way, don’t let Satan silence you or discourage you with his lies. Don’t let him rob you of your God-given voice. His power is nothing compared to God who created you. God has the power and the willingness to heal you. He even finds joyous delight in healing you.

There have been times in my life when I felt like a bruised and bleeding body tossed to the side of the road. No one saw me and no one cared. Then Jesus tenderly picked me up and held me to His bosom, cradling me with His love and compassion. He desires to do that for each of us again and again.

The healing process can be long and painful and downright overwhelming, but He is right beside us longing for us to trust Him as our Safe Refuge, to allow His grace to heal us, and to open our hearts to His love.

The next time you see a rainbow, whether in the sky or in a photo, remember God is faithful and always keep His promises. He will never abandon you. He is beside you even on those days when you can’t “feel” Him or see His signs.

“For no matter how many promises God has made,
they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through Him
the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.”
2 Corinthians 1:20

“Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds,
I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant
between God and all living creatures
of every kind on the earth.”
Genesis 9:16

“So be strong and courageous!
Do not be afraid and do not panic before them.
For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you.
He will neither fail you nor abandon you.”
Deuteronomy 31:6 NLT

A Child's Trust

“Tell Your Heart To Beat Again”
by Danny Gokey

“Tell your heart to beat again
Close your eyes and breathe it in
Let the shadows fall away
Step into the light of grace…

Let every heartbreak
And every scar
Be a picture that reminds you
Who has carried you this far…”