Love this story or not, you won’t be able to have tea in a tea cup again without thinking of this.
There was a couple who took a trip to England to shop in a beautiful antique store to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary. They both liked antiques and pottery, especially tea cups. Spotting an exceptional cup, they asked “May we see that? We’ve never seen a cup quite so beautiful.”
As the lady handed it to them, suddenly the tea cup spoke, “You don’t understand. I have not always been a teacup. There was a time when I was just a lump of red clay. My master took me and rolled me, pounded and patted me over and over and I yelled out, “Don’t do that. I don’t like it! Let me alone,” but he only smiled and gently said, “Not yet.”
When I thought I couldn’t bear it another minute, the door opened. He carefully took me out and put me on the shelf and I began to cool. Oh, that felt good! “Ah, this is much better,” I thought.
But, after I cooled, he picked me up and he brushed and painted me all over. The fumes were horrible. I thought I would gag. “Oh, please, stop it!” I cried. He only shook his head and said, “Not yet.”
Then suddenly he puts me back into the oven. Only it was not like the first one. This was twice and hot and I just knew I would suffocate. I begged, I pleaded, I screamed, I cried! I was convinced that I would never make it. I was ready to give up. Just then, the door opened and he took me out and again placed me on the shelf, where I cooled and waited and waited, wondering “what is he going to do to me next?”
An hour later, he handed me a mirror and said “look at yourself” and I did. I said “That’s not me. That couldn’t be me. It’s beautiful! I’m beautiful!”
Quietly he spoke: “I want you to remember. I know it hurt to be rolled and pounded and patted, but had I just left you alone, you’d have dried up. I know it made you dizzy to spin around the wheel, but if I had stopped, you would’ve crumbled. I know it hurt and it was hot and disagreeable in the over, but if I hadn’t put you there, you would’ve cracked. I know the fumes were bad when I brushed and painted you all over, but if I hadn’t done that, you never would have hardened. You would not have any color in your life. If I hadn’t put you back in that second oven, you wouldn’t have survived for long because the hardness would not have held. Now you are a finished product. Now, you are what I had in mind when I first began with you.”
The moral of this story is this: God knows what He’s doing for each of us. He is the potter and we are His clay. He will mold us and make us and expose us to just enough pressures of just the right kinds that we may be made into a flawless piece of work to fulfill His good, pleasing and perfect will.
So when life seems hard, and you are being pounded and patted and pushed almost beyond endurance; when your world seems to be spinning out of control when you feel like you are in a fiery furnace of trials; when life seems to “stink”, try this.
Brew a cup of your favorite tea in your prettiest tea cup, sit down and think on this story and then, have a nice little talk with the Potter.
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