One-of-a-kind mug # 10

Posted on Thursday 3 September 2009


 

I love mugs. Love wrapping my fingers around a mug filled with hot, aromatic coffee, morning or night. I like the weight of my numerous mugs; their irregularities and the random stories behind them. Mugs are multi-functional at my house: they not only serve hot beverages, they make a perfectly good receptacle for fresh berries, yogurt, tomato soup or oatmeal. Everything tastes better to me when it’s cradled in the curves of a good, solid mug.
A few weeks ago, I ordered a handcrafted mug from one of my favorite virtual gathering places, Andrew Peterson’s wise and welcoming Rabbit Room. (The real Rabbit Room is in Oxford, England, in a tiny pub called The Eagle and Child. Years ago writers like C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien and Charles Williams used to raise their own mugs there, as they critiqued one another’s writing.)
When my Rabbit Room mug arrived, I liked its heft, and its roughness. I liked the rich ochre color, and the splashes of scarlet inside. I like the letters “the rabbit room” imprinted facing me on the rim, and the nicely curved handle wide enough to slip three fingers through. But it took a few days before I noticed something else about my mug: the tiny numeral “10″ etched just beneath the handle, reminding me that of of the 26 or so Rabbit Room mugs crafted, mine was 10th in line. And although I’ve not seen the others, I am certain that while they might appear similar, none is quite like this one. Mug #10 is one of a kind.
You are, too. And so am I.
God’s creativity is so limitless that he has never – not once! – in the creation of bodies and souls crafted the same one twice. For all our similarities, we are different down to the contours of our fingerpads and the tiniest ridges of our minds. The desires of our hearts, the gifts we bear, the abilities we possess and the visible reflection we make in the mirror – these are unique. No two alike, anywhere, ever. Even every sunrise is different, and no two stars or strawberries are alike. G.K. Chesterton once imagined God so delighting in creation that each morning he chose to say ”Let’s do it again!” C.S. Lewis said there are no ordinary men or women, that each of us is shot through with something utterly eternal. And he was right. 
We might not have unique numbers etched on our surface for the attentive eye to see, but we are fearfully and wonderfully made, just the same.  Mug #10′s beauty is a testimony to the skill of its potter, and your own particular ins and outs are a great shout of praise to your maker, too. Glory be to God for molding and shaping you just as you are. He has done well, and you are very well-made, indeed.   
“Who are you, O man, who answers back to God? The thing molded will not say to the molder, ‘Why did you make me like this?’ will it? Or does not the potter have a right over the clay, to make from the same lump one vessel for honorable use, and another for common use? And He did so in order that he might make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory, even us, whom He also called…” (Romans 9: 20-21, 23, NASB)
 

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