Some days, I don't want to be the clay. The clay gets pinched. The clay gets squeezed. The clay gets molded, and even sometimes cut. I've heard for years, that as the body of Christ, we are called to be His hands and feet, to allow Him to live His life through us, and that we are called to yield to the process of being transformed into the image and likeness of Christ. Sometimes I approach this process with great passion. Sometimes I want to run in the opposite direction. And then sometimes, I want to flop down on the floor like a stubborn child, poke my lip out and say "no." Sometimes I don't want to be clay. Sometimes I don't want to be Jesus with skin on, His hands and feet... Sometimes I don't want to think one more thought about poverty, racism, or any of the other "isms" our society is infected with. Sometimes I don’t want to think about anything more serious than whether to cut my sandwich on the diagonal or straight across.
We talk about being transformed into the image and likeness of Christ. But which image are we speaking of? Is it the image of a son so submitted to the will of His father that he was willing to become a helpless infant in the hands of strangers? Or is it the bruised and battered Jesus, spit on, despised and rejected of men? What about the victorious Jesus, returning on a white horse? How about the image of Jesus kneeling in agonized prayer in the garden asking, “Father if..,” Can we choose which Jesus we become? I suspect that just as all of these images and so many others are all parts of the whole, we have to experience all of these aspects of Jesus as parts of our whole experience of being transformed into His image and likeness. And when I go through my “garden” experiences in the process of transformation, I am so glad that the Bible doesn’t try to clean up the story for the more “sensitive viewing audience.” I’m glad that it records that Jesus whispered an “if”. I’m glad that it tells the truth that there were moments when Jesus didn’t want to be the clay.