“Spirit of the living God, Fall afresh on me.
Break me, melt me, mould me, fill me.”
“Take me, mould me, use me, fill me, I give my life to the Potter’s hand.
Call me, guide me, lead me, walk beside me, I give my life, to the Potter’s hand”
“Change my heart oh God, Make it ever true
Change my heart oh God, May I be like You.
You are the potter, I am the clay
Mould me and make me, This is what I pray.”
I sang the words of these songs many, many, many times in my childhood and teenage. Sometimes they were just the lyrics from a song but very often they were the cry of my heart.
This morning I was reflecting on the new girl at work. She hasn’t been here long and I haven’t had much of a chance to get to know her but I have already seen she has some sharp edges. I don’t know what in her life has brought them on. As I thought about it I found myself praying that God would bring some gentleness to her soul. And some peace.
Gentleness and peace, these two fruits of the spirit would make her so much more content and happy. How do I know? I had to think about that… it’s because I see that she has a very similar personality to me. I see in her a sharpness, an edge, a tenseness that I know I would have had without the work of the Holy Spirit in my life.
So how did I change? What did God do in me to smooth away my sharpness that would so easily cut and hurt others? For a moment I was stumped, and then it came to me gently like a dimmed light being slowly brought to full light.
It was a series of years of confusion, pain, frustration and feeling of helpless and hopelessness. These years had started out ok. There was happiness and good days and feelings of being loved. It felt like the start of something good and new and an exciting adventure about to begin.
But it didn’t take long for all that to change and fall away. I was left with the hard slog of coping with a life I hadn’t asked for and barely understood. External forces of which I had very little comprehension and no control violently impacted my core in ways I didn’t know existed. At times I felt like I was drowning… drowning but unsure what I was drowning in or dying from. Pain and confusion became part of my life. This was the breaking.
In the midst all of the breaking there was also the moulding and the filling. There were lesson of love, unconditional love. Lessons of compassion, empathy, gentleness, understanding, grace and mercy. A deep, multilevel, multilayer lesson in how God answers prayer and how He delights in giving us the true desires of our hearts. Learning over and over the grace of God and how truly faithful He is.
The same process that broke me also moulded me and filled me ready for God’s use. The same afflictions, the same situation, the same people, the same pain brought the breaking, the moulding and the filling.
And when God was done, the clay had been broken, mould, fired and filled, He didn’t just put me on the shelf. He started to use me in the way He intended. The way I had dreamed of, and prayed for.
I’ve renamed that period in my life, as of today. I am now going to call it “My Potter and Clay Period”.
“But now, O LORD,
You are our Father;
We are the clay, and You our potter;
And all we are the work of Your hand.”
Do you agree that God only makes us into things He can use? Share your opinions in the comments below.