Summary: Will we allow God to make us the way He wants? Or will we go the way we want?
Opening Illustration: Back in 1501, Michelangelo was commissioned to work on a great statue of David. At the time, he had a big block of marble that was spoiled and abandoned. Most artists would say, “Who needs this ruined hunk of marble?” This marred block of marble was called “the Giant.” It was over 16 feet and weighted over a ton. It was lying in the mud. And they were going to cut it up for tombstones.
But Michelangelo couldn’t take his eyes off of it. Every day he would walk to where it was, and he would touch it, measure it and caress it. He decided to work with it. And so for two years, Michelangelo worked without any contact with the outside world. He chipped off the parts of the marble that were bad. And he chiseled the rest of it into the image he wanted it to be.
Today, his amazing statue of David is considered to be one of the greatest works of art in Renaissance culture. It’s a wonderful example of how an artist can take something that is marred and turn it into something that is marvelous. (1)
Illustration: A psychiatrist who visited a rescue mission listened intently to the testimonies of many converts. The superintendent asked him if he would like to say a word. This is what he said: "Tonight I have been given an opportunity to observe something I did not know existed anywhere. It has been my privilege to listen to the testimony of men who were glad to witness to what Christ had done for them. I know nothing about that, but I confess I cannot otherwise explain what has taken place in their lives. A few of these men I recognize. As drunkards, even as dope addicts, some of them have come under my observation at the hospital. But here they are, alive, well-dressed, delivered, and in their right minds. I do not know how the miracle has been wrought, but of one thing I am confident--nothing in science can account for this change in them. That kind of gospel is worth preaching to anyone, anywhere." (2)
You see God is in the transformation business.
He looks at our clay, and sees a vessel of honor. God doesn’t need gold or silver. All you have to do is give Him your clay. He is the Master Potter.
He can make treasures out of trash, Jewels out of junk, glory out of garbage, Riches out of Rubbish. He can make Diamonds out of coal, Righteousness out of Rift raft
If you let Him put your life on His potter wheel, He can bring Deliverance to the Drug Addict
He can make a homosexual straight!
He can fix your broken home!
He is the God of another chance
And He builds His church with misfits and throw away’s:
God says: (examples from Scripture)
Give Me a murder like Moses, I’ll turn him into a great leader.
Give Me a dreamer like Joseph, I’ll turn him into a commander over Egypt.
Give Me a shepherd boy like David I’ll turn him into a king.
Give Me a child like Jeremiah I’ll turn him into a prophet.
Give Me a fisherman like Peter I’ll turn him into an apostle.
Give Me a tax collector like Matthew, and I will turn him into a disciple.
Give Me a persecutor like Paul I’ll turn him into a preacher.
Give Me someone who has been married 5 times like the woman at the well, & I’ll turn her into an evangelist.(3)
There is no telling what God can do with a piece of clay. Why does it seem like God takes the unlikely things and turn them into something great? Paul said that God took the weak things and the base things of the world to put to shame the mighty. So that:
1 Corinthians 1:29 that no flesh should glory in His presence.
It is all about what God does not about what we do. It is all God and God gets all the glory. And He is not done with me yet.
Philippians 1:6 being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ;
We don’t know what God will make out of us. 27 years ago I never knew what God was going to mold me into. I remember distinctly God speaking to call me into the ministry. I just knew God had to be wrong because I was a hot shot fighter pilot flying F-16s in Korea. I thought I was God’s gift to aviation.
But God had a plan for me, it was almost 20 years to the day I got the call to preach, God call me here to Rosemont. It was a long road and some of it was very painful, but God was molding and shaping me into what He wanted me to be. And God is still working on me!