Yesterday, Pastor Stanley and his wife took a group of us young people to the Ozark Folk Center in Mountain View, Arkansas. We had a blast touring the different old-time shops, and seeing all kinds of neat things. Pictured below are some highlights from the day.
Trying out the different hats!
The print shop
A donkey-powered merry-go-round!
Phillip Robinson and I (Micah Robinson in the background)
I soooooo want one of these for my doorbell someday! (P.S. The springs aren't connected, so it is totally safe!)
After leaving the Folk Center, we stopped at a country store; the pictures below were taken there.
Baby "rattlers?" Maybe baby "rattles" would be more accurate!
Here are the baby "rattlers"!
It turns out, the box contained a picture of a man who was eating chicken! LOL!!! (Sorry about the side-ways picture; I didn't think about the angle at the time!)
Playing and singing a song at the country store.
These two pictures are from the pottery shop at the Folk Center. I saved them for last because of what they reminded me of. (It's kind of amazing, but I did manage to have a serious thought in the midst of all the fun and laughter we shared!) As I stood there watching this lady form something beautiful from a lump of clay, I was reminded of the spiritual analogy; Christ is the potter, we are the clay.
Before the potter picks up the clay, the clay is worthless. Paul says in Romans 7:18, "For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not." Before Christ picks someone up, they are worthless. Don't let the world deceive you by telling you what a good person you are; we are all filthy, rotten sinners on our own! Ah, but when the Master Potter picks up the clay, regardless of what that clay looks like, it is valuable to Him. Hey, when Jesus Christ saves a sinner, they may look worthless to the world, but they are precious to Him! However, He doesn't want to leave the clay as He found it; He want's to create a beautiful vessel!
Now, we all want Christ to mold us into a beautiful vessel, but are we willing to endure the process that is required in order to become what He wants us to be? Are we willing to, like the clay, be spun in circles and molded on a wheel? Are we willing to go through the fire? Are we willing to be painted or glazed just how the Potter wants? Are we willing to then go through the fire again?
It's very easy to pray, "Lord, please use me." What we ought rather to pray is, "Lord, please make me useable. Many Christians are unfit for the Master's use because they won't allow Him to make them useable. Remember, God isn't looking for talented people. Rather, He is looking for empty vessels- people who are willing to surrender ALL to Him so He can mold them into something that He can use.
"But now, O Lord, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand. (Isaiah 64:8)