The Potter’s Hands!

Isaiah 64:8

Yet, O LORD, thou art our Father; we are the clay, and thou art our potter; we are all the work of thy hand.

Jane Studdock, the heroine of C.S. Lewis’ That Hideous Strength has a ghastly moment where she realizes (much as Lewis had once done) that life wasn’t a case of “finding the spirituality that suits our taste” or “man’s search for God”.  Rather, she discovers with a start that it is a case of hands thrust down toward us, skillfully sculpting us, and rather heedlessly interfering with our lives as they please.  This does not mean, as so many people have mistakenly taken it to mean, that God is a Cosmic Puppetmaster, making and destroying people on a whim.  But it does mean that the bottom line of our lives is that God is God and we are not.  This simple fact is highly distasteful to a society obsessed with consumerism, pride and autonomy.  Nonetheless it is so.  And this, despite our protests, is a good thing since God intends more for us (including our own freedom) than we could ever intend ourselves.  Today, thank God that he loves us and wills our good.

Mark Shea


Mark P. Shea is a popular Catholic writer and speaker. The author of numerous books, his most recent work is The Work of Mercy (Servant) and The Heart of Catholic Prayer (Our Sunday Visitor). Mark contributes numerous articles to many magazines, including his popular column “Connecting the Dots” for the National Catholic Register. Mark is known nationally for his one minute “Words of Encouragement” on Catholic radio. He also maintains the Catholic and Enjoying It blog and regularly blogs for National Catholic Register. He lives in Washington state with his wife, Janet, and their four sons.

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