Skip to main content

the Potter and the clay

yesterday at Bible study, we had a special guest speaker named Carol Oliver. she is a potter, and came to tell us all about the Biblical analogy of God being the potter and us being the clay, all from a potter's perspective, while making pottery in front of us. it couldn't have been more amazing, one hour full of breathtaking analogy. but there were some things that stood out to me. [if you ever have the chance to see her "speak" somewhere, GO!]

it was near the end of her presentation, when she was taking us through the process of firing the pottery after it had been carefully kneaded, spun, and shaped into the exact piece that the potter had planned. after it's molded, it has to be thrown into a kiln at 1800 degrees to be "fired". if it doesn't go through the fire, it can never be used. it will just crack or melt back into a messy lump of clay.

after the fire, it is thrown into a trashcan with newspaper and everything goes up in flames again. when that's finished and the lid is removed from the trashcan, can you guess what's there? well, yes, a dirty piece of pottery that needs some polishing up, but also... ashes.

the pottery has to go through the fire before it can be used. but when the fire is over, the Potter reaches in carefully, and pulls the beauty from the ashes. He cleans and scrubs and polishes until this piece, that He created from a lump of clay and for which he has planned a unique purpose, is ready to be filled up and used. filled up with Living Water... to be poured out into other pots. 
you know, seeing it through the potter's eyes, it can make you thankful for the fire. you see the significance and the necessity, in the grand scheme of God's ultimate plan for you. choose to trust instead of react. choose Him. He is faithful. don't you remember the story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego? the flames didn't even touch them. their clothes didn't smell of smoke. the only thing that burned away were the ties that bound their hands. and Jesus Himself was right there in the fire with them. [read the whole story in Daniel chapter 3].


When you pass through the waters, 
I will be with you; 
and when you pass through the rivers, 
they will not sweep over you. 
When you walk through the fire, 
you will not be burned; 
the flames will not set you ablaze.

Comments

  1. Didn't know that about pottery, how profound. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  2. also, of course, i randomly opened my Bible to that story. i wasn't lookin' for it.

    ReplyDelete
  3. shoot. i was reading this, totally tracking with WHY this meant so much for you and how it is just a confirmation of all the lessons lately, etc. etc. but then, you caught me off guard. i just read the story of the guys in the fiery furnace about an hour ago in my quiet time. i was so moved and fixed on the emphasis in scripture that their clothes were not burned and that they didn't even smell of smoke. you repeating this is so for me. i'm not totally sure why, but it's for me. again. twice in one hour. weird. i think perhaps the challenge for me is unwavering, fearless, truth-telling, like those guys did.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

on embracing disappointment

sometimes it's the hardest thing we'll ever do to pause our ever-moving-forward agendas long enough to see another person. to have compassion and grace and understanding for them, especially when it interferes with our desires, when it means laying down our own needs in order to meet theirs.

our own motives and our own agendas can feel so important and forefront, so that moment of yielding to someone else can feel almost impossible. like a death of sorts.

because you know what? it hurts to die to self. it just does, no matter how insignificant it may seem to an onlooker.

but i'm learning to embrace all of the emotions that come with disappointments like this, not to ignore them or feel shame for experiencing them (probably the hardest part for me). to feel them, acknowledge them, let them sit there while i figure out the next right thing.

it's hard work to live in the tension of wanting to be healthy and magical and able to live above the waves - while still being very…

hope spoken 2014 | a little recap

well. it feels weird to be back here in this space. i haven't regularly blogged for over a year. i'm feeling like it's time for a redesign but that's beside the point. i'm really here to tell you about Hope Spoken conference that i attended in dallas 2 weekends ago. everyone has been saying how they need time to process everything. i'm no exception. what i'm about to share is really an email i wrote to casey and danielle a few days after i got home, but i've edited and expanded a little. there is still so much more in my heart and mind that's not quite ready to come out:

i'm finally sitting down to pour out my heart after such an amazing weekend. the first thing that's hitting me is these three girls went with a dream and a mission and a calling from Jesus, and were brave to walk through the door and keep going, as danielle describes it. i'm sure they imagined how beautiful it would be but i don't think they could have imagined just …

on fear and anxiety and unbelief

i've been struggling lately. i know. what a great way to start out my first blog post of like this entire past year. but really, does anyone even read here anymore? it's been awhile...

if you follow me on instagram, i've alluded to my struggle with fear and anxiety in small bits. but last week opened the floodgates when i shared a photo of that day's "Jesus Calling" entry which read:

Anxiety is a result of envisioning the future without me. So the best defense against worry is staying in communication with Me. When you turn your thoughts toward Me, you can think much more positively. Remember to listen, as well as to speak, making your thoughts a dialogue with Me.

If you must consider upcoming events, follow these rules: 1) Do not linger in the future, because anxieties sprout up like mushrooms when you wander there. 2) Remember the promise of My continual Presence; include Me in any imagery that comes to mind. This mental discipline does not come easily, beca…