Marred in the Potter's Hands

Jeremiah 18:2-6  "Then I went down to the potter's house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels.  And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it...Behold, as the clay is in the potter's hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel."

As I have been working with clay the past few months and just recently started throwing, I have often thought of this passage.  We can assume that the clay did not mar because of any fault of the potter (unlike some of my cases).  Sometimes, while at the wheel, my instructor has told me that I pushed to hard or wasn't consistent enough with my pressure and threw it off center.  The Lord knows when to "apply the pressure" or send something into our life.  He also knows exactly how much we can take, and he will never have us go through something too great for us.

Because we know that we are in the hands of the Master "Potter", if the vessel of our life becomes flawed, we need to look inwardly.  First of all, it is important that clay has no air bubbles.  To get rid of the trapped air, a potter will wedge the clay.  This is a repetitive motion of folding and pushing.  Do we ever get tired of Christ working with us trying to get out all the pride and selfishness?  Air bubbles in clay create visible flaws on the surface and cause the pot to explode in the kiln.  Pride and selfishness also look ugly in our life.  Furthermore, as we have learned from the proverb, pride goeth before fall.  Wedging the clay also evens out the consistency so that the moisture is dispersed throughout the whole ball of clay.  Any hard lumps will make the walls uneven and make it off-centered.  If we have refused to give something up, that one thing will keep God from making us exactly what he wants.  Sometimes the clay might be too hard, and It won't respond to the pressure of the potter's hands.  Often, if we are too set in our own ways or thinking, God has a hard time molding us into what he wants us to be.

There is a lot of hope in this verse too: "so he made it again..."  That is a very encouraging phrase.  Every time one of my pots fail (which is more often than not), I just scrape it of, wedge it up, and reuse it later.  As my instructor says, "It's just clay."

"Have Thine own way, Lord! Have Thine own way!
Thou art the Potter, I am the clay.
Mold me and make me after Thy will,
While I am waiting, yielded and still."

"Oh, make of me what Thou wilt have me to be,
As clay is so I am to Thee;
Just fashion me to Thine own pleasure,
Till Thou shalt Thine own image see."

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