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"There He (God) put the man whom he had formed" (Genesis 2:8).
Read: Gen. 2:7-8; Isaiah 45:9; Jer. 18:1-7.
What Is God Saying?
God formed man. The verb used in verses 7 and 8 is the same as that which describes what a Potter does to clay when he shapes it into a vessel. The idea of a vase or a pitcher begins in the mind of the creating artist. He knows what he wants before he puts his hand to the job. He knows the purpose to which it will be put. He knows the kind of material he needs. He brings it all together. When all is ready —the raw clay, the spinning wheel, water to keep the clay workable —the idea that started in his mind takes shape beneath the caressing, careful and caring touch of his fingers. So man was "formed", an idea of God, an idea of something, someone, who would be perfect took shape as a vessel on the Potter's wheel. The "man" so formed was given the breath of life and he became the greatest of God's creation, its crowning glory.
God's perfect idea. God's perfect work, and he was put in a perfect place. Then came Satan, subtle, deceitful, persuasive; the temptation, the disobedience, the sin. And that which was formed had now become deformed. The beautiful became ugly. The perfect had become flawed.
How Does This Apply To Us?
We are all touched by the consequences of sin. We all long for another chance. Across our mind there flash visions of what might have been. Can it still be? Is there a plan for that? Yes, God who formed man perfectly can take the vessel that is broken and re-form it. "If any man be in Christ, he is a new creation" (II Cor. 5: 17). The God of creation is also the God of re-creation. Could it be said more clearly than in Jeremiah 18:3 and 4? "So I went down to the potter's house, and there he was working at his wheel. And the vessel he was making of clay was spoiled in the potter's hand, and he reworked it into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to do."
Let our prayer today concern itself with what God can do with the vessel of our life. Broken, perhaps, but re-worked in His hand, a vessel to be used by His hand,for His glory and for our joy. Not perfect yet, but, in Christ, on the right road.
Pray With Me
O God of all creation, God of the perfect plan, You formed a perfect man and put him in a perfect place. Through pride and rebellion, the man You formed chose his plan over Your plan and preferred the heady sense of short-lived liberty to the deep bliss of steadfast obedience. Now, across the wreckage of a world that might have been, I reach out for life as You planned it. Out of the shambles of my own willfulness, I want to retrace my life on the pattern of Your perfect design. Yet like a thick cloud, my transgressions obscure my vision. I cannot look on that perfection which You have intended. The dread paralysis of sin keeps me from moving toward that perfection which You have purposed.
Now, therefore, Lord of the perfect creation, be to me the God of re-creatIon. Though I am not able to take a single step, lift me all the way up and bring me all the way back to life as You first intended it. Bring me in to the serene calm of Your sheltering love. Lead me in paths of righteousness for Your name's sake. Restore me to the joy of Your approving smile. Let me rejoice again in the strength of Your cultivated companionship. Through the recreating power of Jesus Christ, may I become the man of Your first and only plan. Then keep me, Lord, in this sin-blighted world, as the one that You have formed again!
For Jesus' sake. Amen.
Moving On In The Life Of Prayer
The God who formed us once and placed us here is still working on us. We keep frustrating His perfect plan by our disobedience and willful pride. Yet through faithfulness in prayer we will discover what He wants to do in us and what He can do through us. Pray without ceasing.
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