Don't Resist The Potter's Wheel
by Arway Sayeh-Swepson
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Don’t Resist The Potter’s Wheel
As a child I disliked visiting the doctor because most of the time an injection or some awful medicine climaxed the whole nerve-wracking episode. At home, I also hated nasty and disgusting medicines like Castor Oil, Epson Salt and bitter Malaria pills. We were told that we took them to cleanse our systems of microorganisms and that it was for our own good. But I did not care and I did not want to know. Only one thing I was convinced of and that was it tasted awful. One truth I discovered though; I felt fine, fit and alert after I had taken the medicine. There was some good in it after all.
Now as an adult--a “Christian” adult, I am faced with yet another uncomfortable but “for-my-own good” ordeal. It is the Potter’s wheel. The Potter’s wheel is like a spiritual Operating Room (without anesthesia) where parts are taken of and parts are put on. It is a place where contamination is disposed of. It is a correctional facility. It is a place of refining.
It is also a place of spiritual makeover, where spiritual liposuction is performed--the removal of the unnecessary and detrimental pounds gained from feasting on spiritual junk food. Spiritual junk food slows us down and renders us unhealthy as Christians. When we are unhealthy we can not run and finish the race that is set before us neither can we fight a good fight. We must rid ourselves of all that junk in order to become fit for God’s work.
The Potter’s wheel is not my favorite place. It is a painful place. I dread the potter’s wheel very much but it is a place that I must go if I want to get well and if I am to be used of God. As uncomfortable as it is, I must comply, yield and be still so that the potter will have his way with me and transform me into a valuable and unsinkable vessel.
Despite all of my flaws, God took a thorough look at me and saw worth. He knew that I could become a better vessel for him if only he could remove foolish pride, anger, impatience, malice, timidity, fear, procrastination, laziness, bad attitude and so forth.
God placed me on the potter’s wheel and began to work on me. He began with the removal of hatred. You see the anger that I did not deal with when John Brown offended me took root in me and turned into a tumor of hatred. Hatred is a cancerous cell that keeps multiplying and eating away at everything in its path. It will definitely cause both physical and spiritual death if left unchecked. Hatred disqualifies me as a Christian. As a child of God, I must always show that love is greater than hate. I must love even when it is impossible to love.
God went on and on removing parts and putting parts on. While he was melting and molding me, I protested, struggled and resisted as his hand became heavy on me; removing all of the impurities. It was unbearable. At one point, I almost jumped off the Potter’s wheel—enough already! But God was not moved by that; he held me down and continued with the transformation. Just how a mother plays deaf to a child’s cry of protest when being disciplined, he paid no mind to my resistance and cries; he kept on molding and shaping me.
A practical example of the Potter’s wheel for me was the Liberian civil war. It was for a divine purpose that God let me experience and survive that horrible civil. War. He broke me into pieces during the war until I yielded and came face to face with him; naked and stripped of everything including money and status. I lost everything and he was all that I had left. I became utterly dependent on him. I did not just read his word but I lived his word. I became an intern; the war was my internship—filled with practical training.
He broke me and took out the contamination of total self-reliance and arrogance. He made me realize that without him, I can do nothing. I relied on him for healing when hospitals and medications were inaccessible. I relied on his manna from heaven, when food became scarce. I relied on him for protection when I walked through the valley of the shadow of death daily. We lived on the edge and life became cheap. People died in the thousands. Death was the norm of the times--staring us in the face daily.
During the war He let me become displaced to see what it is like to be without a home. I became penniless in order to see what poverty is really like. I experienced severe hunger in order to have compassion for suffering and starving people.
Since that time, I have never looked at life the same again neither was I ever the same again.
All of the contamination that I carried for so long has been disposed of on the potter’s wheel. They were replaced with humility, compassion, love, patience and many other positive traits. As a refined Christian I feel much better now and well equipped to be a solider in the army of the Lord.
Refining is a painful and gradual process but it is required for our own good. The result is always a “masterpiece” created by the Master himself.
Don’t ever resist the potter’s wheel. Surrender and say to the Potter, “Have thine own way Lord, Have thine own way, Thou art the Potter; I’m the clay”, melt me and mold me after thine will, while I am waiting, yielded and still”….
Arway Sayeh-Swepson – 2006
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I'm perplexed. How can one who has spent so much time on the Potters' wheel use the terms "I" and "me" so much?
Simple, because I'm sharing a personal experience and God does not have a problem with that and so do other mature Christians...
I thank and praise God for you, in Revelation 12:11 it states that: and they overcame him by the blood of the lamb and by the word of their tesitmony: and they loved not their lives unto the death... and I am a servant of the Lord God that knows exactly what you are feeling in this article. Again praise God to let our lives be a testiment and witness to all whose lives maybe won for Christ just through that testimony alone!!!