On Monday nights, my wife and I take a pottery class at the Chapman Cultural Center in Spartanburg. It is a beginner’s class and we are learning the basics like how to throw and center the clay on the wheel. It is not as easy as it looks but to be honest, I thought it would be more of a challenge to me than it is. It seemed that by the time we completed our third session of the course that I had the technique down, (or so I thought anyway).
Well this past Monday’s class taught me a lesson. I walked in, prepared my clay, sat down at the wheel with my pottery tools, and started with the high aspirations of making a bowl, coffee mug, and whatever else I could think of. To say the least, it did not happen that way. I began to work the clay but it would never go where I tried to make it go, do what I wanted it to do, or stay where I wanted it to stay. Now I realize that the problem wasn’t with the clay, rather it was with me.
After about two hours, all I had to show for my time and effort was a mountain of wet scrap clay, no bowl, and no coffee mug. In the final hour of the class I was finally able to make a cup but it was toward the end of the night and I didn’t have time to form and put a handle on it. The instructor had been watching as I struggled and fought the clay. He came and sat down beside me and said, “You tell that clay what to do. Don’t let it tell you what it is going to do.”
As I sat there working in those last few minutes, I thought of how many times God must look at us the same way that I looked at that clay. We don’t always do what He says to do, go where He tells us to go, or stay where He wants us to stay. At those times I’m glad He doesn’t get upset with us the same way that I got upset and frustrated with the clay. Rather with love, compassion, and mercy, He is patient and longsuffering with us. I’m sure there are times that God has to put us aside and then come back to us later to make us a vessel for His honor. We must remember, we are the clay and He is the potter. Unlike when I was working with the clay on the wheel, the problem is not with the Master Potter (God), but the problem is with the clay (you and me). We don’t tell the potter what we want to become or how He needs to make and mold us. We are simply submissive in the hands of the Master Potter.
Eventually I did throw a piece that I can use and be proud of, and guess what, that is what God wants to do with each of us. He wants to make a vessel that is not only pleasing unto Him, but one He can fill with His Spirit and use each and every day. Until next week, God bless.
Tune in to WBCU 103.5 FM Sundays at noon for the Shining Light Broadcast. I preach a 15-minute message that I pray will be a blessing to those who listen. If you have a prayer concern, comment, or question, please write to: Voice of Victory, Attn: David Burrell, PO Box 1221, Pacolet, SC 29372, message me on Facebook, or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.