Thursday Challenge-Psalm 121:2-4

Today we have a  guest designer, Rachael Johnson. Here is her take on the Stampin Sisters In Christ Challenge #89.

Chris Olsen is the challenge hostess this week. What a blessing it is to share scripture with you today and ways that God has told me that HE is in CONTROL.  My Verse is:

“My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.  He will not let your foot slip–he who watches over you will not slumber;  indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.” Psalm 121:2-4

When I ponder over this verse, I think of how God is an ever present help not just when we are experiencing hardship but always!! Unlike us, He need not sleep and he knows every circumstance in our life and how it will turn out. A few weeks ago on my personal blog, I had shared the “Footprints” poem with my readers and how God is always with us. One of my dear friends and Christian sisters, Fhiona, shared a poem with a very similar message which I want to share with you today.

The Tea Cup

Love this story or not, you will not 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, and especially teacups.  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 teacup 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!”

Then WHAM! I was placed on a spinning wheel and suddenly I was spun around and around and around. “Stop it! I’m getting so dizzy!  I’m going to be sick!”, I screamed. But the master only nodded and said, quietly; ‘Not yet.’

He spun me and poked and prodded and bent me out of shape to suit himself and then he put me in the oven. I never felt such heat. I yelled and knocked and pounded at the door. “Help! Get me out of here!” I could see him through the opening and I could read his lips as he shook his head from side to side, ‘Not yet’.

Then 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 so 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, Stop, I cried”. He only shook his head and said. ‘Not yet!’ Then suddenly he put me back in to the oven. Only it was not like the first one. This was twice as hot and I just knew I would suffocate. I begged. I pleaded. I screamed. I cried I was convinced 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’s 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, then,’ he said, ‘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 on the wheel, but if I had stopped, you would have crumbled. I know it hurt and it was hot and disagreeable in the oven, but if I hadn’t put you there, you would have 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 had 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 little talk with the Potter.

Challenge:

Create a card or project with a tea or coffee cup or pot-this can be the designer paper, the image, or embellishment.

Card by Rachel Johnson

Inside verse:

So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10

Supplies Used: Rose Teapot digital stamp colored with Copics (I have searched for hours on the internet trying to find the source of this image.  This was a freebie stamp I downloaded two years ago.  If you know the artist, please feel free to contact me and I will note it in my supplies.) Praying For You sentiment from Stampin’ Up, Scripture stamp from Our Daily Bread Designs, Patterned paper from large DCWV stack from Costco, Mulberry Roses from Wild Orchid Crafts, lace trim from Fancy Pants, pearls from Michael’s

You can learn more about Rachael by visiting her blog at www.perennialmommy.blogspot.com

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