Monday, January 21, 2013

Throwing clay

“Throwing clay” is the term used when using a wheel to make pottery. I have no idea why it’s called that because I did not see a lot of throwing of anything. I learned about throwing clay today from a friend who invited me to visit her at the art annex on campus. 

My incredibly artistic friend was working on a project for her ceramics class. I had never watched someone throw clay and was amazed by the amount of skill required. My friend placed a lump of clay on the wheel. As the wheel spun, her hands coaxed the clay until a center and sides appeared. The shape the lump took depended on how she moved her hands and applied pressure. Every time she touched the clay, a change occurred. 
My friend's hands controlled what happened. I watched her skilled hands take a lump of nothing and mold it into a beautiful, grayish-brown cylinder.
The descriptions in the Bible of God as the potter naturally came to mind. I always just thought of those descriptions as pretty metaphors and never gave it more thought. But it’s so much more than that. Watching my friend work, I was overcome by the realization of how fitting the description of God as the potter is... how powerful it shows he is.
God's touch in our lives changes everything. Without it, I am just a lump spinning helplessly on a wheel. With it, I can be molded into whatever he chooses. How I long to be molded into something beautiful and useful to him! He has complete control over what happens. When a potter touches the clay, the clay can’t remain unchanged.