RSS Feed

Tag Archives: potter

The Picture of Perfection

As a young aspiring athlete, my picture of perfection was the best player in every sport. Wayne Gretsky in hockey, Dr. J in basketball, Steve Carlton in baseball and Reggie White in football. Before the existence of social media, news was strictly based upon a player’s performance. Today, there is no picture of perfection as critics on the right and left pick apart rising stars like vultures during a feeding frenzy.

You, therefore, must be perfect [growing into complete [ak]maturity of godliness in mind and character, [al]having reached the proper height of virtue and integrity], as your heavenly Father is perfect, Matthew 5:48.

The Sermon on the Mount points to perfection, but in the sense of striving towards it. The apostle Paul quotes an Old Testament prophet in Romans 3:9-12 to burst the bubble on human perfection. In case you haven’t heard, this is impossible as all men and women has fallen short of God’s glory despite how hard each has tried, Romans 3:23. Despite this painful reality, Hebrews 4:15-16 refers to Jesus as a great high priest who was a model of perfection, dying on our behalf.

For we are God’s [own] handiwork (His workmanship), [d]recreated in Christ Jesus, [born anew] that we may do those good works which God predestined (planned beforehand) for us [taking paths which He prepared ahead of time], that we should walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to live], Ephesians 2:10.

If life is meant to be a series of trial and error, sooner or later you’ll start to take steps toward perfection. The apostle Paul compares God to a spiritual potter, constantly molding and fashioning us into His image, Romans 9:20-21. Meanwhile, Paul compares God to a carpenter in the passage above. Depending upon your gifts and talents, the Holy Spirit seeks to guide you toward the good works God has planned for you in the future, Philippians 1:6. As you keep in step with the Holy Spirit, Galatians 5:25, may your life resemble the fruits if God’s Spirit like a picture of spiritual perfection.

by Jay Mankus

Forged by An Inner Desire

Forged by Fire is a 1997 novel by Sharon M. Draper. While critics gave positive reviews of Draper’s realistic fiction book, the Reality Television Show which shares the same name has stolen most of the headlines. Beginning in 2015, Forged in Fire is approaching its 9th season. Before his sudden death last January, my wife’s uncle John forged his own rifles as I enjoyed listening to his stories on specific guns that he made, forged by an inner desire.

Zillah bore Tubal-cain; he was the forger of all [cutting] instruments of bronze and iron. The sister of Tubal-cain was Naamah, Genesis 4:22.

While studying the first book of the Bible, I discovered the individual who invented the forging process. According to Moses, Tubal-cain began to experiment with bronze and iron. As Tubal-cain began to perfect the forging process through trial and error, Moses refers to him as the forger of all cutting instruments. While the Industrial Revolution of the 18th century has received a majority of the credit for modern technology, there is nothing like a hand-crafted tool forged by fire.

That is why I would remind you to stir up (rekindle the embers of, fan the flame of, and keep burning) the [gracious] gift of God, [the inner fire] that is in you by means of the laying on of my hands [[c]with those of the elders at your ordination]. For God did not give us a spirit of timidity (of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear), but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self-control, 2 Timothy 1:6-7.

The New Testament of the Bible speaks of an internal forging process, 1 Peter 1:6-7. Jesus’ earthly brother writes about how hardships, trials and tribulations shape who we become, James 1:2-4. As circumstances, events, and situations mold and fashion human beings like a potter that shapes clay, everyone reaches a point in time where you realize why you were born, your purpose on earth and God’s plan for your life, Romans 12:1-2. Take whatever gift, talent or skill that you possess, flame it into flame via the Holy Spirit, forged by an inner desire to complete the good works prepared in advance by God, Philippians 1:6.

by Jay Mankus

%d bloggers like this: