Text: Jeremiah 18:1-6
Subject" Make me Again"
One cannot talk about the issues or challenges for the 21st century without being obsess with the great sense of our need for restoration.
And the word restoration means: a putting or bringing back into a former, normal or unimpaired state or condition.
And if any authentic vision of the 21st century must have in it a sense & expectation of restoration. Because if we as a church need anything in 2010 it is Restoration!
We as the body of Christ need to be put back together again. For we are broken and need restoration. In other words we need the Lord to "Make Us Again!"
We really don't need much more economic knowledge, for we have an abundance of accumulated information passed over the centuries.
But what we need here in the 21st century is "Restoration and to be made again." For we are" Broken"
And a healthy vision of the 21st century must include restoration. That's really what we're looking for.
We are trying to go forward & yet we have a need to be where we've been.
But we are trying to be more than we are, but in reality we want to be as much as we were. We want to be made again!
It is a vision that summons us, but not with empty hands. It is to live in tent of our was-ness & our will- be-ness.
It is to operate in the now, with " a sense of the already", it is "RESTORATION!" We are trying to be what we can be, trying to keep what we we're.
And it's here in the book of Jeremiah that we want to look at restoration.
For it's here in the 18th chapter and the first six verses that there is a vision of brokenness being restored, there is recorded there a word of hope for the hopeless. It's a word of RESTORATION!
For sometimes we want to give up and throw in the towel and hold our heads between our legs and give up. For it just seems like all hope is gone.
So the Lord tells Jeremiah that before you give up, I want to show you something.
Before you throw in the towel, I just want to show you something. And just maybe we need to see what God showed Jeremiah.
Because some of us feel like that. For we look around and see how bad of a predicament that the African American community is in and how oppressed our people are.
How 1 out 4 of our boys are related to the penal system, how crack cocaine & other drugs are robbing our young people of their possibilities.
How some bright mind might be wiped out by a gunshot bullet on some reckless street corner?
Some body might be here this morning and you're about ready to put your head between your legs & give up.
But I stop by on today to encourage somebody “don’t give up for there's a tap coming on your shoulder.
God tells Jeremiah, “I have something I want to show you." The scripture say's when we analyze it, that God lifts Jeremiah & takes him down into the Helon Valley in Southern Judah. There Jeremiah he is taken to the potter's house.
Now the potter's house is the place where clay is made. There's a wheel there where the clay is shaped against the wheel.
And there's a junk yard there where old discarded vessels are thrown away.
Well, when he gets there, when The Lord takes him down there. He shows him & he sees the potter. The potter is working on a piece of clay.
And the Bible says “He’s working on a vessel as seem good to the potter to make it." And it says, “something goes wrong with the clay in the potter's hand." And it says, “But the potter keeps on working on the messed up piece of clay until whatever is wrong in it gets right."
And about that time the Bible says, God speaks to Jeremiah & asked Jeremiah this question. “Jeremiah, am not I as good as the potter?"
Now you do know don't you, that when God ask a question it's always a rhetorical question.
For you see when God ask a question, it's just asked for emphasis of divine reality.
Because when you start trying to answer God's questions, you began to make a devastating presumption, that there are some questions & answers that you have that God does not have.( I think I need to say that again!)
When God ask a question, He's not asking for an answer. Ezekiel knew that when he stood up in that valley of dry bones & God tipped up on him & and asked him & said, “Can these bones live?"
Ezekiel knew not to answer God. Ezekiel said, “Thou knowest. And whenever God ask a question. God already knew the answer.
He just wants to ask the question. For he asks the question, “Can I do what the potter does?"
It's almost a Divine Prayer. “Jeremiah, I'm as good as the potters. Preacher can I do what the potter does."
For the scripture says that the clay was marred in the potter's hand.
In other words, something went wrong. The clay in his hands wasn't coming out like the formation in his mind.
And you do know don't you, the only one who can know that it was marred was the potter.
Because if you walk up and look at a potter, you don't know whether it is coming out right or wrong.
Only the potter knows, because the potter knows what he has in his mind to do with the clay. (I'm just about finished)!
And you know my brothers and my sisters that’s what happened in our creation God had something in mind for us.
But somewhere along the way, the clay got marred in the potter's hand. Something went wrong; there was a distortion of Divine intentionality.
When God completed creation in six days & on the seventh day he rested, creation was like God wanted it to be.
But something got marred in the potter's hand. The clay became what God did not want for the clay to become. And God did not give up on the clay.
You know church its one thing to be marred on the ground. It's one thing to be broken on the ground. But it's another thing to be broken in the potter's hand.
Some of us may be broken on the ground. And if you're broken on the ground, you'll end up in the junk pile, with no hope of ever being anything else.
But, when you’re marred in the potter's hand that's a mighty big difference.
And I'm so glad this morning that I'm marred in the potter's hand.
For you see if you’re in the potter's hand, He doesn't throw you away. He keeps working on you.
Sometimes up & sometimes down, but He keeps working on us. Trying to make us what he wants us to be.
He keeps pulling & tugging on us. Salvation history is about a divine tug & a divine pull on the human clay.
Trying to put the imprint of Divinity in it. God is not through with us yet!
I don't know how you feel about it today church? But I’m so glad on this morning that I'm in God's hand.
For they're mighty good hands to be in. Is there any body in here who can say you’re in the Lord's hand?
The same hands<> that threw the stars against the night. The same hands<> that lifted the sun out of its oriental chambers. The same hands<> that can Make Us Again!
The same hands<> that lifted the silver queen of the night and the moon in its boot-Waa and sent it across the tinted sky.
They're the same hands<> that change tad-polls to frogs and caterpillars to butterflies.
The same hands<> that can restore men back to there rightful place. The same hands<> that can take an alcoholic and make him a deacon.
The same hands<> that can take a broken man and restore him back to the body of Christ.
The same hands<> that can make us Again.
The same<> hands turn boys into men and girls into women.
The same hands<> that can turn a dope pusher<> into a Jesus pusher!
Is there anybody<> in here this morning<> that can say with me<> that you’re glad<> you’re in the potter's hand?
Are they're<> any saints in here<> this morning<> that will say with me<> that your glad<> God is still<> working on you. That God<> is not through<> with me yet.
I'm REMINDED of the song that says: please<> be patient<> with me<> for God is<> not through<> with me yet, <> for when God<> gets through<> with me, <> I shall<> come forth <>as pure gold!
Do I have anybody in here that can say with me Have thine<> on way Lord, <>have thine on way, <> thou art the Potter, <> I am the clay?
Make me & mold me<> after thine<> on will, <> while<> I am waiting, <> yielded and still. <> I'm in the masters hands.
Is there anybody here that is still in the master’s hand! If you know that you’re still in the master’s hand somebody ought to lift their hands and say Yes, <>say Yes<> Somebody Shout Yes!!!