As I think about how I use my hands, I look at my hands. They remind me of my mother’s hands. They are wrinkled just like my mothers were. I am reminded of 1 Thessalonians 4:11b that suggests to work quietly with our hands, which is how my mother worked with her hands…quietly quilting, preparing food for family and others, cleaning, gardening and canning food as well as serving others through volunteering at places like MCC World Crafts. As I ponder my mother’s hands I realize I use my hands much like my mother did. My hands perform daily tasks that nurture my family such as preparing food. My hands create peace within me as I plant flowers around my house; my hands are also used for gardening and preserving food. My mother used her hands to send email at her computer; I also use my hands at the computer to write papers for my classes at AMBS or to type out the order of the worship service I am going to lead or to connect with far-away friends and relatives on Facebook.
I believe my hands are for more than doing. My hands, our hands, can be tools for practicing our spirituality, our faith. Just as my mother did, I use my hands to turn the pages of my Bible or to hold my coffee as I sit quietly with God in prayer. Just as my mother did, I use my hands for sharing my faith as I prepare a meal for a friend who could use some help or to bake cookies for the children that will be gathering for Vacation Bible School. I use my hands to bake muffins for a friend with cancer or to pick up the phone to talk to someone who needs encouragement or simply to wave at my neighbor. My hands are also used to bring comfort as I hold the elderly woman’s hand that is in the hospital again, or to wrap around someone who just miscarried, or whose spouse walked out on them or who just lost their job.
My hands – they bring me reminders of my mother, assist me in accomplishing my daily tasks, help me stay in touch with family and friends, contribute to my time with God and help me to share a little bit of Christ to others in service. Thanks be to God for the gift of my hands.
Wilma Ressler Cender