Saturday, November 3, 2012

I am the Potter

There have been a couple of changes since the last post.  Bette returned from her trip with CAJ's Cross Country team for a meet.  Brian has gone to and returned from the US and Canada for a PR trip for CAJ.  Simone Castro has moved in for seven weeks to do her student teaching here at CAJ.
Monday, October 22nd, CAJ's Physics and grade six class went on a field trip to Toshimaen.  It was my first school field trip here in Japan.  An interesting event since I don't speak or read Japanese at all and we were taking the train to Toshimaen.  A good thing the Physics teacher has a much better grasp of Japanese. Toshimaen is an amusement park with a variety of rides.  All 41 grade six students, 12 physics students, and 7 adult chaperones made it to and from Toshimaen.  We divided the grade six students up into six groups and each group had two physics students to lead the group and try to understand what the rides were doing related to physics.  It was a fun day for all!  

Entrance to Toshimaen Amusement Park
The past two and half days we had parent/student/teacher conferences.  We had 40 conferences scheduled.  The other two core teachers and I met together with the parents.  Students were not required but welcome to come.  The majority of the students did come.  It was really the first time I had students with parents at conferences.  I think it is good for parents, students and teachers to sit down together to talk about successes and areas of improvement, at least at the middle school level.  I found that parents were quite supportive.  
Today, Saturday, November 3rd, was a fun day!  Brian, Bette, Ginny, Simone and I went to Mashiko to the pottery festival.  We looked at a place where they make indigo and walked through many, many pottery places and visited a kiln.  The one verse that kept going through my mind was Isaiah 64:8, "Yet you, Lord, are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we all the work of your hand."  I saw many, many different types of pottery.  I was amazed at how the potter can shape the clay in so many variety of ways to make many different things.  The Japanese like to have many different cups, bowls, knickknacks and plates that are used for specific food or tasks.  I kept thinking about how God created each of us for a variety of different tasks, some of us look alike to others, but we each have been blessed with a wide range of gifts and talents.  It made me reflect on how God was shaping me throughout my years here on this earth.  Each of my experiences have shaped me to make me into the person I am today.  Even though God has had a hand in shaping me, because of my sin, I am a cracked pot.  I can go into a mini-sermon on all the things I thought about, like going through the fire, cleansing, blemishes, etc. but I will leave you to enjoy the pictures I took of Mashiko today and maybe think about what kind of "pottery" is God shaping you to be?  
Here is a sampling of the variety of pottery.
A kiln built into the side of the hill.  This kiln was destroyed during the March 11, 2011 earthquake.

Inside the kiln

Some of the pots at the kiln.

Pottery at the kiln in various stages
Potter's Hand by Darlene Zschech (Hillsong)
It was a beautiful end to the day.  This picture was taken on the ride back home.  

1 comment:

  1. Hi Winnie,
    Praying for you in Japan and glad to see you are doing well. I have thought of the pottery/potter symbolism myself of late. Thankful that God has shaped you into who you are today.
    Carin and family