A Sweet Sermon
December 9 - Isaiah 64:1-9
v.8 “But now, O Lord, you are our Father;
we are the clay, and you are our potter;
we are all the work of your hand.”
A batch of Christmas cookies can be a sweet sermon. The baker gathers the ingredients and mixes a giant bowl of dough. In substance, each cookie is identical. Various forms are then given to individual lumps of dough. The entire batch endures a trial by fire, a testing which serves to solidify its baker-ordained shapes. The baker adorns the batch with a diversity of gifts, - no two cookies are alike. Finally, the baker delights in giving these treats away to bless others.
The prophet Isaiah speaks strongly of the helplessness of humankind. Intended to be the ingredients of God's blessing for the world, Israel instead became "like one who is unclean." They asked, "Where are you, God?" because "you have hidden your face from us."
But now, there is good news for inedible ingredients. The Lord is the Potter, we are the clay. The Lord is the Baker, we are the dough. Luther comments, "Our breaking is done in the hope that we shall be shaped anew. Thus in all temptations let us firmly believe that we are not mire of the streets but clay of the Potter, God, who will reshape us."
We are the work of God's hand extended in Jesus.
Go and treat the world with the sweetness of the Gospel.
Great Potter, you have shaped us anew in Christ Jesus. May we be vessels of your mercy in a merciless world. Amen.