Week 12 Friday

A Work In Progress

Today’s scripture selection: Isaiah 62-66

Key verses: Isaiah 64:8


     I remember a time, from what seems a lifetime ago, when I took some art classes in college.  I was fair at drawing; got by in basic graphic design; did well in Art History; and was actually good at cartooning.  But there was one thing I knew I better not attempt: ceramics.

     I stood amazed at how some students could sit down at a potter’s wheel, start it spinning, and create the most elaborate of vessels.  If I were to try, I was sure I would spin a glob of mud off into the air in seconds – probably striking the professor right between the eyes.  So I left it to those who had the touch.

     Maybe that’s why the scripture passage that speaks of how we are the “clay” in the hands of the divine Potter has always moved me.

     “We are the clay, you are the potter, and we are all the work of your hand.”

     Those words speak to me of divine creativity and patience.  They hold the promise that we need not be perfect; and we are far from being “finished.”  We are God’s “work in progress” and there is no telling what He ultimately has in mind for us.

     So…when I feel

  • Inadequate
  • Unworthy
  • Afraid
  • A Failure in my own eyes

I take hope and start again – because as the old bumper sticker says, “God isn’t finished with me yet.”  And thank God for that.

So take a deep breath; relax; your best days may be yet to come.  It’s all up to the Master Potter whose creation you are.  And He is known for making very beautiful vessels.  You are one of them.


Prayer: Thank You Lord, mold me and make me as you will.  AMEN.









By Paul Simrell

The Reverend Paul W. Simrell has served for over thirty years in a variety of congregational and institutional settings. He is a recognized minister with standing in the Virginia region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada and is nationally endorsed by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) for specialized ministry in both pastoral counseling and chaplaincy. Ordained in 1982, he has served congregations in Kentucky, Texas, Florida, and Virginia. He currently serves as the pastor of Elpis Christian Church, a small, historic congregation located just a few miles west of Richmond, Virginia. “Elpis” is the Greek word for “expectant hope.” He is a graduate of the University of Florida and Lexington Theological Seminary and has done advanced clinical training in chaplaincy and pastoral counseling at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky, Children’s Medical Center and Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Texas and the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care in Richmond, Virginia. He is a Certified Pastoral Counselor, an ACPE Practitioner, a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors, and a member of Spiritual Directors International. He is a Certified Facilitator of the Prepare-Enrich relationship assessment and skills-building program and served as a volunteer chaplain for over twenty years with the CJW Medical Center campuses in Richmond, Virginia. His avocational interests include playing the piano and drawing. He is very happily married to his wife Elizabeth Yeamans Simrell, a free-lance writer, who is also a Certified Facilitator for the Prepare-Enrich program. Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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