Have you ever wondered what your hands say about you? If someone were to see a picture of just your hands, what would they think of the person they belong to?
Hands are described as being ‘a prehensile, multi-fingered organ located at the end of the forearm or forelimb of primates such as humans, chimpanzees, monkeys, and lemurs.’ (Wikipedia)
They are associated with the sense of touch, are an integral part of communication and our ability to move and grasp things, including each other. However, as much as we use and need our hands, if they are not connected to the rest of our body, they are useless.
The Bible teaches us that:
“We are like the various parts of a human body. Each part gets its meaning from the body as a whole, not the other way around …. Each of us finds our meaning and function as a part of his body. But as a chopped-off finger or cut-off toe we wouldn’t amount to much, would we?” (Romans 12:4-5 MSG)
“He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow.” (Ephesians 4:16a NLT, second edition)
Our hands are uniquely designed for a specific purpose that serves the body overall. So what do your hands say about you? About your work? Your role; your purpose?
Some people have very rough hands, the skin is hardened and calloused from working with them manually every day. Some people have very soft hands, the result of great care and less physical use. They each tell a story – paint a picture.
When I think of hands, I think of the ability to communicate and convey emotion, yes. But I think of all the things I do with my hands on a daily basis:
I hold things.
I hold others’ hands.
I carry things.
I do things.
I touch things.
I touch others.
I make things.
I lift things.
I lift others if and when I can.
I show things.
I fix things.
I put things.
I push things.
I let go of things.
I move things.
I shake things.
I scratch things.
I create things.
I write things.
I manage or maneuver things.
I applaud things.
I hit things.
I fit things.
I open things.
I close things.
My hands are somewhere in between hard and soft. My work doesn’t call for the physical use of my hands, but they have callouses, nonetheless, from lifting weights in the gym, despite my wearing gloves – a kind of badge of honor for me, because they tell the story of my discipline and dedication in that area.
Sometimes they are wonderfully manicured and paint a picture of the girl who takes care of herself and likes pretty, girly things, – and other times they are unattended, showing you the woman who is too busy with work for personal time and who is more focused on and committed to the things she needs to do than with the things she likes to do or have.
With my hands I have created masterpieces – and I have created chaos and madness. I have done awesome work – and I have made terrible mistakes. But the crazy thing is ~ no matter what – my hands keep moving…
It is as impossible for my fingers and my hands to be still for any length of time as it is for me to stop breathing for more than a minute.
My hands show the resilience of my spirit. Even when I am knocked down, they keep pushing me up. Instinctively. Without my forethought, inclination or desire – they keep pushing me up and onward.
I think it is how God created us to be – created our bodies to work, our hands to function. Our hands brace for us instinctively, protectively, as we fall – and immediately try to push us up.
I don’t know what people think when they see my hands. I know what I would like them to see or think. I’d like them to think – She is:
- A Doer
I hope that when my days are slower and longer, my hair is greyer and my skin has more wrinkles and my eyes are glistening with a great many memories – I hope then that my hands are still busy – doing things.
Helping with things. Fixing things. Making things. Creating things. Weaving words. Writing stories. Lifting things. Lifting others. Touching and comforting others. Holding others’ hands.
Letting go of the things that don’t matter so much and holding on to the people and things that do.
I hope that my hands are still so closely connected to my brain and heart that they are still doing the work that my soul knows I was put here to do. I hope my hands will still be making a difference, leaving an imprint on the lives of those who need to know, feel, see the love of God through the hands of those of us He has showed Himself to so clearly and blessed so much.
“Your right hand, O LORD, is majestic in power, Your right hand, O LORD, shatters the enemy. Exodus 15: 6
So it came about when Moses held his hand up, that Israel prevailed, and when he let his hand down, Amalek prevailed. But Moses’ hands were heavy. Then they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat on it; and Aaron and Hur supported his hands, one on one side and one on the other. Thus his hands were steady until the sun set. Exodus 17: 11-12
Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” Matthew 14: 31
“But when you give to the poor, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing.” Matthew 6: 3
Lift up your hands to the sanctuary And bless the LORD. Psalm 134: 2
Upon the palms of my hands I have written your name. Isaiah 49: 16
He has put his angels in charge of you
to watch over you wherever you go.
They will catch you in their hands
so that you will not hit your foot on a rock. Psalm 91: 11-12