Listen to me, if I could sit down with you and tell you all that has happened in my life, it would be one marveling session after another. As a hopelessly lopsided piece of earthenware finding myself deep in the heap of “good for nothings,” the Potter lifted me out and placed me on His wheel of “rebirth!” It was a redemptive rescue. However, impatience demanded a finished product, immediately. I was insistent on a look of perfection that transpired ASAP. What I would come to learn is the necessity of the kiln and not as a one-time event, but a repeated action to complete the transformation. This found me voicing disapproval to the Potter insisting that an external sheen would be sufficient. The process of rebirth is a one-time event but the remaking of a piece of earthenware requires a daily discipline of connecting with the Potter and His remarkable training manual: the Bible; A dying to self: cheap earthenware becoming a polished porcelain pottery reflecting Christ! The Potter is never surprised by our impatience or complaints. It is exactly that stiff-necked attitude which caused the Children of Israel much heartache and grief. When they refused to enter the Promised Land because of the giants, they spent forty years wandering in the wilderness. Imagine the extra time I spent wandering instead of being a productive piece of polished earthenware.
There we saw the giants (Numbers 13:33). Giants are so easily seen, aren’t they?! They stand out, bigger and badder 😉 !
Caleb and Joshua saw the giants, yet they stand out as our role models! Because even though they saw and reported the size of the enemy living in the land they were to possess, they shifted their perspective to the slayer of giants, the One Who had promised! The Potter!
Through the many testings, the hard places of life, the cruel fate of others, and even the painful diagnoses, the burning fires bring endurance! The Potter knows it is through these very experiences that we learn to endure! Otherwise, we delay usefulness to our Maker if we do not withstand the heat of the Kiln!
Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.James 1:2-4, NLT
Sixteen years ago, stands out as one of the darkest years. Other years have rivaled it, but that one will forever be etched into my heart as a year of hard places. All Hope lost. Destructive mindsets raging. Had I not spent time on the Potter’s wheel relinquishing control and experiencing the kiln, I would have never had the endurance to withstand the onslaught. I am thankful for the patience of the Potter and persistence of the testing that perfects and completes us until we reflect Him!
In what and in Whom have you learned to be thankful?
Jeremiah 18; Galatians 5:24; 1 Peter 1:7; Numbers 13