Friday, February 03, 2006

Hands

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So many different images come to my mind when I think of God and His hands.

First a song of childhood: “He’s got the whole world in His Hands . . . . .”

Then there is the old sermon by Jonathan Edwards “Sinners in the hands of an angry God.”

Scripture is ripe with verses that speak of God’s hands. In some instances they are hands of judgment and destruction, at other times hands of grace and comfort. They do works beyond wonder, creating the heavens and the earth, and yet they also form and shape man from dirt. At time they can bring wrath and devastation to those who rise against Him but are held back by the power of His grace and patience. The hands of the Lord are as mysterious and holy as is He.

But one thing stays the same; they are the hands of the Lord. They only do work that exhibits His character. And in them all people are found. The grasp of the Lord is tight, his grip firm, and yet his touch is gentle, his caress filled with love. There is peace as well as turmoil when one finds themselves in His hands.


In you, O LORD, I have taken refuge;
let me never be put to shame;
deliver me in your righteousness.
Turn your ear to me,
come quickly to my rescue;
be my rock of refuge,
a strong fortress to save me.
Since you are my rock and my fortress,
for the sake of your name lead and guide me.
Free me from the trap that is set for me,
for you are my refuge.
Into your hands I commit my spirit;
redeem me, O LORD, the God of truth.
Psalm 31: 1-5

It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour, for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Jesus called out with a loud voice, "Father, into your hands I commit my spirit." When he had said this, he breathed his last.
Luke 23: 44-46

I find it so comforting that Christ quoted this passage from Psalm 31 upon the cross. In the moment of His death, in the throes of pain and the reality of sin, Christ calls upon the One who judges and who offers grace. It is both that He finds in God’s hands, judgment upon the sin that He took for our lives and grace that flowed from the cross. Christ knew firsthand the duality of God’s hands, the extremes of their works, and yet He quoted that verse. A verse of surrender, of hope, of faith, of peace.

What follows the statement of surrender in Psalms is the thing in which we place our hope, our faith, when we commit ourselves to His hands: “redeem me, O Lord, the God of truth.” Redemption is the purchase back of something that had been lost, by the payment of a ransom.

And redemption is only found in God’s hands and by His hands. It is in His hands that we find grace and it was by His hands that judgment was settled and the ransom was paid.

In His hands.

9 Comments:

Blogger Mark D said...

Very good reminder, Katie. I watched The Passion again the other day and still get amazed that in the midst of everything happening on the cross, Jesus was still quoting scripture.

Nice picture too. How long did it take you to photoshop your arms out?

2/03/2006 2:40 PM  
Blogger Aim Claim said...

We are called to be the hands and feet of Christ, each part making up one body... to serve, to help, to walk, to carry, to lift, to touch, to feel, to live .... to love Him.

2/03/2006 3:55 PM  
Blogger Ben said...

Katie-

Great post. You're iron all right.

How do you continue to write like this? I think God is calling you to be a writer.

SERIOUSLY.

2/03/2006 3:58 PM  
Blogger Katie said...

AC - so true, what a calling

Ben - thank you, and by the all caps I'm assuming you really meant it, actually I saw this picture and it spurred the post. I have a few other pics that may lead to some other posts as well. Funny how things strike you in the moment.

2/03/2006 4:01 PM  
Blogger Amstaff Mom said...

GREAT post K-T. Can you imagine the feeling of HIS touch on a leper? Who craved a person's touch as much as the air they breathed. Then for it to be the touch of the one that formed them in their mother's womb?

Speechless.

And I LOVE learning to communicate and talk with my hands. I've been practicing! I just wish I had learned sign language a long time ago.

2/03/2006 4:08 PM  
Blogger green said...

What a great post. It is good to read such a positive witness.
And what you wrote is so true. Wow.

2/03/2006 7:10 PM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

Oh wow Katie, I didn't realize that Jesus quoted SCRIPTURE on the cross! (You learn something new everyday!

Thank you for the wonderful reminder! Very comforting!

2/05/2006 9:25 AM  
Blogger Sydney said...

Oh Katie...

I love the way your mind puts everything together..... such beautiful wonderful hands he does have. great words...

2/05/2006 10:34 AM  
Blogger Shelley said...

My blog name fits into your post! Confirm the work of our hands...it's in the psalms. I want Him to confirm the work of my hands for His kingdom. It speaks to me sort of as a reminder that our hands are His and that we need to be using them as Him and for Him...

2/05/2006 9:04 PM  

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