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Dan Stillings sang a special song Sunday morning and the Jubilee Singers sang one in the evening. Pastor Bob Sorensen brought a message from the book of Jeremiah 18:1-6, “Broken in the Potter’s Hands”
Jeremiah lived in the days when Judah had become so caught up in idolatry, corruption, moral sins, and greed that God was going to have to let them fall into the hands of the Babylonians and be carried away captive. God told Jeremiah to go to the potter’s house where the potter was working with clay on his wheel. “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.” God was telling Israel that since he was the Lord God Creator and Israel was as the clay in his hands, he had a right to do with Israel whatever he wished. The primary application of this scripture is to Israel, but we can make a personal application as well.
Christians recognize that God is the Potter and we are the clay. God is forming us according to his own design. He has a purpose, a plan, a design for our lives. We have been created to do good works. It is God’s passion to perfect that in us. That is why tests, trials, and adversity come in our lives.
The wheel is the daily routine of living. God operates the wheel. We are shaped by the circumstances of life. God also works the pedal. We do not have access to the pedal to slow down or speed up. Hard times, heartaches, mold and shape us. God may put more pressure on us to shape us into a vessel of honor. We won’t be in heaven five minutes before we will be glad for all his work.
We are the clay. Clay has no beauty or value of its own. But the touch of the Master’s Hand will change the value of the clay. An old violin can be so out of tune that no one sees any value in it. But when the Master picks it up and tunes it, we are surprised at the change.
Humanity has no beauty when marked with wickedness, deceitfulness and rebellion. Modern social thinking would suggest that if you improve the environment, you can change humanity for the better. However, that has not proved to be true. Change people for the better and they will change the environment for the better.
Clay, left to itself is useless. In order to be used it must be pliable, soft, smooth, and free of foreign matter. When a potter forms a vessel on the wheel, he may hit a hard drying spot. That spot like rebellion in the life of a Christian may cause the piece to be ruined. The potter can throw it away or he can work with it to make the desired vessel. We can be thankful that God does not just throw us away when he finds a flaw. He just keeps working on us until we are a vessel fit for his service.