In the Potter’s Hands

Tens of hundreds of years ago, in the Land of Mythoi, there lived a seventy-nine-year-old man who was well-known for cookery and catering. He was so smart in the kitchen that the hell’s kitchen fiend was envious of him. The old man’s name was Mithras.

Mithras kept a high-class inn along the Highway of Haywire, which catered for aristocrats. Every day you would notice nobles sitting around high tables as they greeted each other with high-fives and drink Highland tea.  It was such a buzzing inn along a bustling highway infested with highwaymen.

The king of the neighbouring country was on a journey to the Lands of Youthful Waters. The land was far away; skirted by the Forest of Dread. The Forest of Dread was beyond the Valley of Death. As it was the norm, the king was accompanied by his trusted soldiers and servants. He approached Mithras’ inn and decided to indulge his appetites. He entered the inn and ordered an egg. Mithras told him that it costs 1000 gold coins per egg. The king was shocked: Such was a ridiculous price exacted from him. He asked, “Are eggs so scarce at this part of the country?” Mithras replied, “Not eggs Sir, but patrons like you.”

 

Prizes have prices

It is pricey to be a costly person. It is expensive to maintain costliness.  It takes the strong and determined hands of a potter to produce a wonderful objet d’art; a vessel worthy the honour. The sons and daughters of the Kingdom must be shaped and molded into a form that suits the Potter. The dear children you see around have a costly price wrested from them. The Potter does not make knickknack vessels.

The Weeping Prophet

Jeremiah lived before, during and after the fall of Jerusalem. He was born at the right time; for he had an exclusive purpose to live up to. You are alive at this time for a purpose that goes beyond your mind’s eye. You have a divine role to play, and the Universe needs you.

Jeremiah preached repentance to the Children of Israel. The more he preached it, the more they rejected it. He warned them that their razzmatazz, snazziness, craftiness and deviousness were to end in blight, gloom, and blood. The more he travelled and travailed taunting the tenacity of evil, the more he was accused of treason and treachery.

Perpetual rejection of God was a good recipe for ominous future. God abandoned them to their wanton and wanting ways. Their continued aberration and abomination attracted abandonment from God.

However, Jeremiah preached hope too. He communicated the promise of God that would arrive after seventy years in bondage doldrums. Preaching of judgement should always be accompanied by hope. That is the complete message of the cross, for God does not wish to destroy anyone (John 3:16).

Nebuchadnezzar II, the king of the global force of the time – Babylon – swooped them away as a fish eagle would do to a tilapia. The Book of Jeremiah narrates these accounts. It is the Book that has a reputation for being the longest in the Bible, in terms of words and verses. Jeremiah records the Potter and the Clay account in Chapter 18:1-5. The potter represents God, and the clay the Children of Israel.

A pot from somewhere

Pottery is as old as humans. It has been here for thousands of years. The pot you see around did not just happen: It had a beginning. If it had a beginning then it has a cause. If it has a cause then that cause is outside itself. That is the logical sequence of the existence of this pot. That is commonsensical.

For us to dispute this, then we should be complex and wily. Every piece of object we see has adequate reason for its actuality.  This is what philosophers have called the Principal of Sufficient Reason. If you saw a snake abruptly emerge from an empty kitchen pot then you cannot say it came from nowhere. You cannot say it just appeared in the kitchen pot from nowhere. Instead, you will look for a cause. Did the snake fall from the ceiling? Did a magician place it there while you were looking the other way?  This mean if there is no physical cause, then there should be another cause: Perhaps you were hypnotized (psychological), or a miracle happened (supernatural). Even if you do not find the cause that does not mean that the serpent just happened. The absence of evidence for a cause does not imply the presence of evidence for no cause.

It is somehow reckless to believe in the Pop theory: that things just pop into existence for no specific reason. Perhaps we will never find the cause, but there must be a cause for everything that comes into existence. Life has a cause. The events of life have a cause. Nothing just happens.

“God wanted the Children of Israel – and us too – to know that He is the transcendent Cause. He is their Potter. He is their Cause. He is the first cause; the uncaused cause.”

 

In the Potter’s Hands

The Potter get the clay by Himself. He starts working on it and only uses water if it begins to crack. Too much water will dissolve the pot and in the end, there is a mess instead of a message. He uses the fingers on the inside to smoothen and press the base down; so that the base cannot be basic but a bastion. Cracks and crevices are smoothened out too.

Carvings and decorations are done by way of a sharp object. After this, the Potter leaves the pot in the sun to dry, it is sheltered from the extreme elements of weather.

The pot is now ready to be hardened further. And at this stage, it must go through fire. The fire is not meant to destroy it, but to make it hard enough for the next assignment. The next project, which is likely to take place in the kitchen, will require a vessel that is impervious. What is inside should not get outside unless allowed by the Master. What is outside should not get inside unless allowed by the Master.

Accordingly, all these pottery work is a preparation for the next level mission. This pottery work is not in vain. It is not shenanigans, and cannot result in shambles. It is a well-orchestrated endeavour to produce a useful vessel.

That is why we must stop complaining. Instead of parsing, we should be praising.  Peevishness is indistinguishable from throwing a spanner into the works.

You are in the Potter’s hands. The longer it takes, the greater the assignment awaiting you.

 

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