The Persuasion of the Potter’s Patience


“The Lord gave another message to Jeremiah. He said, ‘Go down to the potter’s shop, and I will speak to you there.’ So I did as he told me and found the potter working at his wheel. But the jar he was making did not turn out as he had hoped, so he crushed it into a lump of clay again and started over.”  —  Jeremiah 18:1-4


Think of the gratefulness that filled the heart of Jeremiah when he realized the patience of God in the visual lesson he was receiving at the potter’s shop. Not only was God able to make Israel over again, but He was so willing to do it!

Think of Abraham, that great man of faith. One day he disobeyed the Lord and left the promised land for Egypt. While in Egypt he went from faith to fear and to falsehood. He lied about his wife. Because of his disobedience and dishonesty, he almost lost his wife. What did the Lord do? Did he mutilate Abraham? No, He made Abraham over again.

Think of Peter, the great man of courage. One day he became prayerless. Peter then allowed sinners to come between his soul and the Savior. Trying to warm himself at the world’s fire, he got a spiritual chill. He went down from courage to cowardice and to cursing. What did the Lord do? Did God destroy him because of his denial? No, God made him again.

Has your life been marred by a mistake? Are you defeated and discouraged? Do you feel that the Lord has left you and that He doesn’t love you? Are you wondering if He’s finished with you? Oh, He isn’t! He is just beginning and He will make you again if you will let Him.

A boy was born on a farm in the east. His Christian parents taught him the Word of the Lord by lip and by life. While at the university, his friends and professors discouraged him and robbed him of his faith in the Lord. He lived a wild life and was looked upon as an atheist.

He became a captain in the Union Army and was badly wounded during a bloody battle near Atlanta. The stretcher bearers discovered him in the field and said, “He’s gone! His chest is blown open.” They walked away, leaving him alone in the darkness. But his father and mother were praying fervently for him, and as he lay there that night the Lord spoke to his heart. He looked up to the Lord, confessing his sins and calling upon Him for forgiveness. He told the Lord that if He’d let him live, he’d spend the rest of his life serving Him.

Early the next morning the stretcher bearers returned. They found the captain alive, and they rushed him to the hospital. Calling for a chaplain, he heartily and happily turned his life over to the Lord. The clay that was marred in the hand of the potter was made again into another vessel.

The Lord took that man who had been an atheistic lawyer, and made him a mighty minister. While he was the pastor of Grace Baptist Church of Philadelphia, some students came to him for instruction because they couldn’t afford to go to college. As an outgrowth of those classes, he founded Temple University for deserving and destitute students. He was its first president. From his lectures and books he made between six and eight million dollars, giving just about all of it for the education of boys and girls. He gave his most outstanding lecture, “Acres of Diamond,” more than six thousand times. How grateful and glad we are that the Lord didn’t give up on Russell Conwell.

He won’t give up on you, as well.

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