In the Hands of the Master Jeweler

The jeweler’s gnarled fingers moved with a deftness that belied his age as he examined my broken earring.

“Can it be fixed?” I looked at the shiny bald patch atop his head encircled by tufts of grey hair as he bent over my earring.

He straightened, gestured for me to sit in a chair, and then walked to the back of the store, where he lit a fire. With the bellows, he coaxed the flames till white-tipped tongues spiraled upward. He grunted as he bent to place the bellows on a rickety table. Then, he picked up the two pieces of the broken earring with a large pair of tongs, and thrust it into the flame. As the earring pieces glowed red hot, I scooted my chair back. The jeweler pulled the tongs out, and began to hammer the pieces together. A few moments later, the pieces were doused in an aluminum bucket of water, hissing as they cooled. He placed the earring on a small bench, taking his time as he gently molded it into shape. Then he began to smooth the surface of the earring with a tiny file.

Fascinated, I watched as he repeated the process several times. Almost an hour later, he placed the earring on the glass counter in front of me. I picked it up and gasped, turning it over looking for the line marking the break in the earring. As I ran my fingers over the delicate filigree work, not even the slightest of bumps indicated where the pieces were molded together. I looked at him in disbelief.

A smile creased his weathered cheeks as he said, “Earring broken, but I fixed it.”

I often think of the old jeweler in his tiny store, tucked away on the corner of a busy street in India. I’m reminded that the fire of trials may glow red-hot at times. Though I may think He’s silent, the Master Jeweler is ever present, molding me, with tenderness and love, into a vessel for His glory. Some day, I will gasp in awe when I realize how He transformed those times of pain into a delicate filigree that enhanced the beauty of His handiwork in my life. I am never too broken for Him to fix.

In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all
kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.
1 Peter 1:6-7

Anita Mellott writes to encourage others. She has more than ten years of experience as a writer/editor in the nonprofit world. Her book of devotionals for homeschooling parents will be released by Judson Press in summer 2011.