With the onslaught of the current pandemic, I am sure we have all given up on the idea that we can go back to the old normal ever again.
I am certain that all of us have been impacted in some area of our life. The impact may be related to our job, school, social interactions, or that we fell ill to the virus ourselves. Nonetheless, just as these verses in Isaiah 43 stated, "Do not be afraid, I am with you..."
Sometimes I wish I could go into a spiritual coma and when I wake up, everything would go back to just as it was...beautiful and perfect. But that’s not reality. Instead, I find comfort in reflecting on how God is taking us through these difficulties, and He will bring us out the other side as being beautiful and perfect.
This is best illustrated in Jeremiah 18 where we see the potter at work on the clay.
Here we see a process whereby the clay is transformed. The potter is in complete control of molding the pile of mud. This is a beautiful display of our life where God, our potter, works to mold us, His creation.
Again, here we see that God calls upon Israel to come into conformity to the work of His hands. If they do not, they will become marred, and He reforms the clay again into another vessel (Jer. 18:4). He does not destroy or discard the clay; He simply forms it into another vessel which will be used for a different purpose.
Ultimately, we ought to trust God and His perfect will. He will take us through and not abandon us there on the wheel of life. We are the apple of His eye and always at the center of His will and He’s got both His hands on us.
Just like the clay, we must be malleable, willing to endure the spinning wheel, the excess water, the removal of the unnecessary materials, and the constant shaping, so that we can be used for exactly how the creator envisioned.
God can teach us today from even the ordinary clay that He can use any ordinary person. Just as the potter uses the water and fire, God is able to refine us and mold us and pull us through it all by using His everlasting arms of love.
First the Potter prepares the clay. He removes all the impurities to cleanse us.
Second, He then forms the clay by gathering it together and mixing it with water. He is washing us with His word and uniting us to follow His teachings.
Third, He places the prepared clay on the center of the wheel and gets ready to shape it. His hands are always working on the clay while pouring water as needed to mold it to the desired shape. God has a purpose and a plan as stated in Jeremiah 29:11 "'For I Know the Plans I Have For You' Declares theLord, 'Plans to Prosper You and Not to Harm You, Plans to Give You Hope and a Future." The pain and constant spinning may seem unbearable, but know His hands are being imprinted on us.
Fourth, the potter leaves the finished product to cure for a bit. It is in moments like this where we feel abandoned. But rest assured, it is a season of rest.
Finally, the last step may appear to be the hardest but the fire plays a very important role in the finished product. It is into these earthen vessels, that He pours out His power so that we can be used in His kingdom. All we have to do is as it says in I Peter 5:6, “Humble ourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time He will exalt you.”
Next time we feel life is tossing us around, remember God’s purpose in creating us.