God is the potter, we are the clay (Part 1)

Potter's World
Image by vandan desai via Flickr

I shared this to our Youth group last Saturday and it’s been a blessing to some of them (so I was told), so hopefully this short post will become a blessing to you too.

We’ve read and most probably have heard that God is our potter and we are the clay (from the Bible verses). So let’s have a look at them, specifically from Jeremiah 18:1-6.

An Object Lesson from the Making of Pottery

Jeremiah 18:1 The Lord said to Jeremiah: 18:2 “Go down at once to the potter’s house. I will speak to you further there.” 18:3 So I went down to the potter’s house and found him working at his wheel. 18:4 Now and then there would be something wrong with the pot he was molding from the clay with his hands. So he would rework the clay into another kind of pot as he saw fit.

18:5 Then the Lord said to me, 18:6 “I, the Lord, say: ‘O nation of Israel, can I not deal with you as this potter deals with the clay? In my hands, you, O nation of Israel, are just like the clay in this potter’s hand.

It’s interesting enough how God asked Jeremiah to go to a potter’s house. But before we go further many of you might not know yet how a potter works. So let’s have a look at this short video first:

Pay attention to the potter, the clay, the wheel used (which is controlled by his feet), and how the potter mold the clay.



Can you name God’s character in one word? Don’t think you can. He is Love, Mighty, Redeemer, Healer, Justice, the Alpha and Omega, Omnipotent, Powerful, Holy, Mercy, and the list can go on and on and on! He is a Potter with all the great wonderful characteristics!

a) However, have you ever thought of our God as Creative?
Imagine all the sceneries… the thunder, the clouds, the rain, or especially the waterfall? How majestic they look and how unfathomable! What about animals? There are so many variety of animals and each has its own way of eating, food, sleep, defend mechanism, and characteristics. Ever imagine how can you design the food chain by yourself? (Animal A must eat B but C must eat B and then D can eat A and G, and so on). How complicated it must be because if one food chain is lost, then the animals would become extinct even without our interference. How about plants? Flowers? So many types of plants with different seeds, fruits, and all that.

Now, how about human beings? Probably the most complex living things on earth. There are still mysteries about our brains and other organs that cannot be solved by science yet. Even you need a specialist to understand a single organ. If you are a photographer, you’d understand too how great our eye lens are! You cannot buy the best lens out there and match it with our eyes. Ours have the best lens ever created in this world. How about DNA and thumb prints? Can you imagine how hard it must be to create something unique out of billions of billions of people? Can you do something like that?

b) Persistent with Love
There are always impurities within a clay (little stones, etc which makes it hard to mold the clay) but like you see in the video, a potter never gives up in molding the clay into a pot. Our God is like that. He never gives up molding our lives as He sees fit. When there are impurities in our lives, He reshapes and remolds us for a greater good. He loves and He wants us to grow like Jesus, to be a perfect pot, just like a potter for His specific purpose, for His glory.

c) Authoritative
However, often we always thought of our God as a loving and forgiving God. Only a few of us think of Him as an authoritative figure and end up taking His redemption on the cross for granted. He has authority over us! He is GOD. He can do what He wants. Often there are questions that we cannot answer. That is because He is God!

Jeremiah 18:6 “I, the Lord, say: ‘O nation of Israel, can I not deal with you as this potter deals with the clay? In my hands, you, O nation of Israel, are just like the clay in this potter’s hand.
Romans 9:20 – “But who indeed are you – a mere human being – to talk back to God? Does what is molded say to the molder,Why have you made me like this?

Who are we to question what He’s been doing in our lives? Or why He let certain things happen to us?


a) He already knew what He was going to make
Just like a potter, God knows what to make out of a clay. A potter already has a pot in mind (whether it’s a pot to store wine or for other functions) before he put the clay on the wheel. When God created us, He already knew your shapes, your personalities, and your purpose!

Jeremiah 1:4-5 – The Lord said to me, “Before I formed you in your mother’s womb I chose you. Before you were born I set you apart. I appointed you to be a prophet to the nations

b) He takes His time
Unlike us, who want everything to happen instantly, God works according to His will, in His time. Transformations never happen in an instant. Even if you think that you have changed, the truth is you might not completely. God sometimes test you to make you aware that you still need to work on a few things in you. God is the One who transforms you but you have the responsibility to make the change. When you ask God to change you, He doesn’t snap His finger and changes you. In fact, He’ll give you trials so that you may endure and overcome it. For example, if you ask God for patience, more annoying people or events may appear on that day so that you may learn to be patient!

c) Just like a potter uses the water and the wheel, God uses His Word and our lives to shape us
It’s then important for us to keep reading and studying the Word of God. The Word of God is powerful and able to transform our character, our lives. When you sin or about to sin, the Holy Spirit will remind you of God’s Word on that particular area. You then have a choice whether to submit or to resist. The more you resist Him, the more painful your life transformation will become. The more you know God and His Word, the more sensitive you’ll become and easier to surrender.

In fact, most things that happen in our lives are caused by ourselves for not listening to God, for not letting ourselves to be molded by God.


Okay, so what? Knowing all these about our Great Potter, what then? What we should do as a clay? Stay tuned for part 2 ;)

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Michael Aulia is a Christian blogger who lives in Australia. He is the owner of WriteForGod.com and also CravingTech.com

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