Clay in the Hand of the Master Potter
“Then the word of the LORD came to me, ‘O house of Israel, can I not do with you what the potter does?’ declares the LORD. ‘Like the clay in the hand of the potter, so you are in My hand, O house of Israel.”
Last time, we talked about verses 3 and 4 of this chapter. Today, we will continue in that vein of thought through verses 5 and 6, putting ourselves in the place of the clay knowing that God is the ultimate potter.
Making a Useful Vessel
If the potter wants to make a pitcher, he takes the prepared lump of clay, when it is pliable and moldable in his hand and smacks it down in the center of the potter’s wheel. He must smack it down firmly so that it makes a good fix to the wheel. Otherwise, it may break loose under the pressure of his hand as the wheel spins. Once it is fixed firmly to the wheel, he begins to spin the wheel and form it with his hands. He drives his thumbs down into the center of the lump and begins raising the sides. When he has the main body of the pitcher made he cuts hash marks in two small areas where he then attaches a handle to the spots he has made ready. He then pulls out a spout on the other side.
Finishing the Vessel
When it is shaped to his satisfaction, he cuts it from the wheel and places it on a shelf to dry. Once it is dry, he puts it in the kiln and fires it at an extremely high temperature. Then he glazes it, allows it to dry, and fires it again.
The Risk of the Potter
At any point, the vessel may crumble, crack or break, but if it holds together through the second firing the potter will be pleased with it and either use it in his house or sell it for someone else to use in their house.
You are Here
Let’s put ourselves in the place of the clay and know that God is Master Potter. Just think about the whole process of the vessel, as described above. If we are pliable and moldable and do not crumble, crack or break as He makes us into what He wants us to be. Then, He will be pleased and use us for His glory. As believers, when we were saved, at that very moment Jesus covered us in His righteousness. The Master Potter now wants to make us useful to Him by changing us (sanctifying us) little by little, through different circumstances, into what He wants us to be for His glory.
The Firing Process
After past trials, with my lessons hopefully learned and my heart hopefully looking a little more like the heart of Christ, I would breathe a big sigh of relief and think, “Whew! Maybe I’m done now.”
That makes me laugh a little. I know now that the trials will not end until I stand before Him face to face. That is when I will be done and that is when you will be done. Then you and I will stand before Him in the glorified bodies He will give us when our lives on earth are done.
Oh, I still have so much that needs to be done by the Master Potter. If He did it all at once, I am sure I would crumble. I am so thankful that it is a slow process, step by step. What a wonderful place to be – in the Hand of the Master Potter!
Our Passage One More Time
The word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD: “Arise, and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will let you hear My words.” So I went down to the potter’s house and there he was working at his wheel. And the vessel he was making was spoiled in the potter’s hand, and he reworked it into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to do.
Then the word of the LORD came to me: “O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter has done?” declares the LORD. “Behold, like the clay in the potter’s hand, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel.”
Things to Ponder:
- Do I/you ever attempt to hold the Master Potter accountable for what He does?
- Am I/Are you pliable and moldable in His hand or resistant and hard to work with?
- If resistant, what do I/you need to do to become more workable in His loving sovereign hand?