A PURE HEART
“Can I not do with you, Israel, as this potter does?” declares the LORD. “Like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in my hand, Israel.”
God knows how to bring salvation to your family, your friends, your community, and your world. Accordingly, He looks for people who will allow Him to shape them into the instruments He requires to do His divine work. Clay has no plans of its own, no aspirations for service, no reluctance to perform its given task. It’s just clay—moldable, pliable, totally submissive to the will of its master.
At times we excitedly announce to God, “I’ve discovered my strengths and gifts, and now I know how I can best serve You!” At other times we inform Him, “I’m aware of what my weaknesses are, so I know which tasks I’m not capable of doing for You.” Yet such conclusions aren’t characteristic of clay. God isn’t limited to working with our strengths (see 2 Cor. 12:9-10). He can mold us into whatever instrument He requires. When God’s assignment demands humility, he finds a servant willing to be humbled. When His work requires zeal, He looks for someone He can fill with His Spirit. God uses holy vessels, so He finds those who will allow Him to remove their impurities.
It takes a pure heart to see God (see Matt. 5:8). You can attend church services, read your Bible, and pray, but if sin fills your heart, you won’t see God. Take Isaiah, for instance. He was concerned with the death of King Uzziah, the king of Judah, but was disoriented to his Heavenly King. Then something happened that changed Isaiah’s life forever.
God, in all His awesome majesty, appeared to Isaiah in the temple, surrounded by heavenly creatures. Instantly, God’s presence made Isaiah aware of his sinfulness. One of the seraphim came to him with a burning coal and cleansed Isaiah of his sin. Immediately, Isaiah began to hear things he had never heard before. Now he became aware of a conversation in heaven about who might be worthy to be God’s messenger to the people. This prompted Isaiah’s eager response: “Here am I! Send me!” (Isa. 6:8).
Now that God had cleansed Isaiah, he was aware of heavenly concerns and was prepared to offer himself in God’s service. Whereas Isaiah had been preoccupied with earthly matters, now his only concern was the activity of God.
If you’ve become estranged from God and His activity, you need to experience His cleansing. Sanctification prepares you to see and hear God. It enables you to serve Him. Only God can purify your heart. Allow Him to remove any impurities that hinder your relationship with Him, and then your service to Him will have meaning as you offer your life as clay in His hands to do with as He pleases.
It’s not a noble task being clay. There’s no glamour to it, nothing worthy of boasting, except that it’s exactly what Almighty God is looking for: compliant, moldable, yielded clay.
If your tendency is to tell the Father what you can and can’t do for Him, submit to His agenda and allow Him to shape you into the person He wants you to be. Like clay.
How are you resisting God’s hand as it works to shape you to look more like Jesus? What impurities need to be removed from your heart?
How do you desire to see God work in the lives of people around you? How might He be shaping you as a tool for His divine work?
How is trusting God’s plan for your life better than pursuing your own plan? How will you submit to His loving work in your life?
What was the most meaningful statement or Scripture you read today?
Reword the statement or Scripture into a prayer of response to God.
What does God want you to do in response to today’s study? [Henry T. Blackaby, Richard Blackaby (2014). Seven Realities for Experiencing God – Member Book. LifeWay Press. Retrieved from https://read.lifeway.com]