Sunday, August 19, 2012

Broken But Beautiful by Martin Wiles

I’ve witnessed pieces sell for thousands and others for less than fifty.

My wife and I are antique dealers; not pottery collectors. But we’ve witnessed some pottery enthusiasts. Bids starting at one hundred dollars can quickly escalate into the thousands.

Old pottery collectors won’t pay large amounts for just any pottery though. The pieces must be old, regional, have slave marks or be signed by recognized pottery makers and most importantly have no cracks or repairs. Flaws can easily transform a valuable piece into a fifty dollar flower vase.

God assigned Jeremiah the unpleasant task of telling stubborn people his judgment was on the horizon unless they straightened up. To illustrate how he destroys and restores, God sent Jeremiah to the potter’s house. But the pot he was shaping from the clay was marred in his hands; so the potter formed it into another pot (Jeremiah 18:4).

God’s message was clear. His people were marred by bad decisions, immoral lifestyles, selfishness, idol worship, shallow religion and callous disregard for God. If they’d make a U turn, God could shape them into something beautiful-past mistakes notwithstanding.

The ancient pottery message hasn’t changed. God disciplines when we go astray because he loves us. But his discipline has purpose. God’s desires obedience and like a good parent often has to use corrective measures to help us see our errors. The best news is he doesn’t toss us aside when we make mistakes. Like the potter, he can shape us into something more beautiful and useful than we were before. Some mistakes may disqualify us with others but never with God. He’s the master re-shaper of misfits. Don’t let your past mar your present and future.

Prayer: Thank You merciful Savior for giving us the chance to let You make us into something we wouldn’t be otherwise.