The Shape of things to come – The Potter and the Clay
The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord: 2 ‘Come, go down to the potter’s house, and there I will let you hear my words.’ 3 So I went down to the potter’s house, and there he was working at his wheel. 4 The vessel he was making of clay was spoiled in the potter’s hand, and he reworked it into another vessel, as seemed good to him. 5 Then the word of the Lord came to me: 6 Can I not do with you, O house of Israel, just as this potter has done? says the Lord. Just like the clay in the potter’s hand, so are you in my hand, O house of Israel.
As a child, our family did not own a television set. So, on Saturdays we visited my aunt and uncle along with some of their friends for our entertainment watching TV. Supper was made and served during the Interlude. No Social distancing! During the interlude there were large Angel fish swimming back and forth, or a potter’s hands shaping the clay.
To watch a potter at work, it can look almost like magic. A lump of wet clay turns swiftly into a shapely vessel. In your mind’s eye take a moment to watch that happening.
But if the clay if off-centre, the vessel will quickly collapse. The potter can only start again.
Watch that happening too, in your imagination.
This, Jeremiah is told, is how God works with us. Each of us is moulded and re-shaped by God. Where do you recognise that pattern in your own life?
Read the Jeremiah passage slowly a couple of times and ask yourself what God is saying to you by showing Jeremiah the Potter at work.
Respond in your own words to the Lord who is shaping your own life into something beautiful for God.
Prayer of St Ignatius of Loyola
A wonderful Prayer of surrender to God
You have given all to me.
To you Lord, I return it.
Everything is yours, do with it what you will.
Give me only your love and your grace,
that is enough for me. Amen
The Prophet Jeremiah was aware of Gods design to reshape the house of Israel, they were to be like clay in His hands. St Augustine, in his Prayer, is responding to the love, mercy and grace of God after living a wildlife. As an individual he was placing himself into the hands of God to be reshaped.
In the case of Jeremiah and the house of Israel, God is seen taking the initiative. St Augustine on the other hand was responding to God and was willing to be reshaped by placing himself into the hands of God.
On a worldwide scale, humanity has had a wake-up call due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. 2020 will be recorded in world History in every language and has been dubbed as the “New Norm”. As Christians we would hope for more than that as our Creator God takes us in His hands and reworks us like the clay that is off centre and collapsed on the wheel.
We look to and pray to the One who can re-centre and re-shape us as individuals and as nations.
KEEP SAFE – KEEP PRAYING