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"As the clay in the hand of the potter, so you are in my hand, O house of Israel."—Jer. 18:6. ~ ?????? ??Let Jehovah Mold Your Thinking and Conduct ??A potter molds a clay vessel ??Respond favorably to JehovahÂ’s moldingÂ 18:1-11 ??Jehovah shapes our spiritual qualities Â through counsel or discipline ??We need to be malleable and obedient ??Jehovah never forces us to do things against our will ??A potter may change his mind about what to do with a vessel ?????? ??Because Jehovah has given us free will, we can choose either to accept his molding or to reject it ??Jehovah adjusts his dealings with people according to the way they respond to his direction ??As an example of being molded by the Great Potter, a Christian brother walks away from two elders but later returns to talk with them ??In what ways do I need Jehovah to mold me? ?????? DID YOU KNOW? ??Broken pieces of clay beside a clay pot ??Clay was a common material in Bible times. When moist, clay is soft and pliable, and it will maintain the impressions made on it. But clay, even when baked hard, is not a strong material. - ??????
As a teenager, twenty-five year old Anthony from Detroit, started down a self-destructive path that involved smoking, using and selling drugs, and affiliation with a local gang. By his early 20s, he had been repeatedly incarcerated due to gun and drug possession charges. While he desired to clean up his life, he quickly found himself falling back into old habits after each jail stint. When asked why he started down such a dangerous path, Anthony admits that, as a youth, he was influenced by the entertainment industry and the way it glorified such a lifestyle. Reality soon taught him that this was a mere illusion. An illusion that was soon to be dispelled before his very eyes. Sitting in his basement one day, he came face-to-face with reality. His marriage had fallen apart, he had no driver’s license, no stable employment, and no purpose. Life was just passing him by. That is when he decided to reach out to JehovahÂ’s Witnesses to help him study the Bible. He started applying Bible principles in his life, and replaced his old destructive habits with healthy ones. Whereas he at one time turned to drugs to escape his reality, he now works out at the gym. He also changed his associations. At his local congregation, he found real friends who truly love him, support him, and encourage him to maintain constructive habits that help him lead a happy, healthy life. Anthony now says, Â“I donÂ’t have to look over my shoulder, worry about warrantsÂ…I try to help others appreciate the truth about God and the bright future he has in store for us ahead.Â” These days, he holds a respectable job and spends a good portion of his time volunteering in the community. He assists others in learning the same Bible principles that helped him clean up his life. From blindly chasing after an illusion, Anthony now tightly holds on to the real life that he has found.