For Christmas last year, a dear friend gave me a private pottery class for her and me to share. So, after many months of trying to find a suitable date, on Friday night —in the middle of a wind storm — the two of us bravely set out to a small pottery studio in Scarborough. The wind was howling while my friend drove methodically avoiding random flying objects. It was a “hero-ing” drive.
We arrived at the studio (fairly stressed) and were promptly given a demonstration of how to throw* pottery. Not literally. Though after our drive there, throwing pottery may have been therapeutic ;)
*Throwing is a term used when referring to forming or shaping on a potter's wheel.
We were then given a chuck of clay and were told to kneed it into a ball and then put it on the wheel. We centred, opened and pulled our clay until we created a functional ceramic vessel. By the end of our session, I had created five unique (emphasis on the word unique) bowls!
Tony Campolo asked us on Sunday, “When was the last time you had 10 or 15 minutes in quiet - blocking out the world?" (By the way how cool was that? Tony Campolo at Amberlea!!!! Check out his message here).
When he asked that question, I immediately thought of my time at the pottery wheel. I wasn’t praying or thinking of a sermon or what to write for the next blog, I wasn’t even talking to my friend. It was quiet. We both worked away at our wheels, silently concentrating on the clay that we molded with the movements of our hands. In quiet we patiently raised the the sides of our creations, sometimes using pressure and other times with just a gentle touch - the clay always yielding, always responding.
As I have reflected on my pottery experience, I am reminded of what Jeremiah wrote in chapter 18:
This is the word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord: “Go down to the potter’s house, and there I will give you my message.” So I went down to the potter’s house, and I saw him working at the wheel. But the pot he was shaping from the clay was marred in his hands; so the potter formed it into another pot, shaping it as seemed best to him.
Then the word of the Lord came to me. He said, “Can I not do with you, Israel, as this potter does?” declares the Lord. “Like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in my hand, Israel. Jeremiah 18: 1-6
Isaiah 64:8 says: Yet you, Lord, are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter.
Having sat at the potter’s wheel, I get it. God the potter, we the clay. What a beautiful analogy.
By the time we left the studio, the wind had died down completely. There was a calm in the air and also in my spirit. Who would have guessed pottery making could be spiritual?
We are the clay in God’s hands. Yield to Him. Allow God to create you into the person He would have you be, a person shaped for the purpose of bringing glory and honour to Him.
This Sunday is another special Sunday. It is Mother's Day! I do hope you will come and bring the special lady in your life.
I look forward to worshipping with you on Sunday :)