Updated: Jun 28
Have you ever looked at your hands and heard the story they tell of your life? Go ahead, take a good look at them now…..
If you’re like me, they probably show a little age and may be a little worse for wear. They may be polished or wrinkled. Your hands may be delicate and small or large and strong. But that’s not all there is to tell in the story of your hands.
These hard working digits are tireless as they complete tasks from waking to sleeping; from daybreak to sunset and beyond. They are seldom appreciated or thanked for the endless jobs they do. Oh, sometimes they complain by aching a little or show weakness when a task may seem too tough to complete. They can be gentle and they can be strong. But for the most part, they carry on, without appreciation.
Like you, my hands tell the stories of my life.
As a mother they have gently held a newborn life to be nurtured, supported and cuddled. Keeping my vulnerable child safe from the world in a close embrace. They can calm a crying child in the night, or scold a wayward one, clean up a mess in the house, or provide nourishment for my family.
Those same hands can be strong while lifting a small child onto a swing at the park, carrying a child up to their bed after a long day, or firmly holding a two wheel bicycle while she learns to ride free. They can hug fiercely, clap in appreciation, be raised in praise or excitement.
Your hands may be able to paint pictures, play an instrument, write novels, or bake a soufflé. Your hands may be able to change a car tire, weld metal, build a house, or simply hold a book while you read.
As a nurse my hands have held the hands of someone dying, giving reassurance and comfort. They have held the hand of a patient in pain, giving strength and encouragement. The same hands can execute the skills necessary to bandage a wound, start an IV, or manage medical procedures. My hands and arms can give a hug of consolation in grief or a safe haven when someone is full of fear. They have smoothed the brow, straightened the blankets, and gently comforted with strength and grace.
The bible tells us that we are the ‘hands and feet’ of God to do the work on earth that needs to be done. Your hands can comfort the sick, feed the poor, build the shelter, nurture the frail, raise the children, support the elderly, extend hospitality and grace.
“Keep on loving one another as brothers and sisters. Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it. Continue to remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering.”
Hebrews 13: 1-3
As a woman my hands have planted gardens, feeling the soft black earth beneath my nails as I plant, grow, and harvest. They have prepared food to nourish my family and extended hospitality to friends and neighbours. They have learned to do so many things, some I dreamed of and some I dreaded.
I am so thankful for these hands. Even in their crookedness, wrinkles and pain they are beautiful. I am thankful for the lives they have touched and the adventures they have seen. I have so many more tasks for them to complete before my days are done.
What are your hands being called to do?
What lives are you being called to touch?
What life story will your hands tell about you?