The Work of Our Hands

May the favor of the Lord our God rest upon us; establish the work of our hands for us – yes, establish the work of our hands. Psalm 90:17

Sometimes when I look at my hands and see how they are aging, I think of my dear mom. So many times I held hers in mine and gently caressed those wrinkled, tired hands that had become so ravished with time, before she passed away at the age of 94. I could see so much of her past in each line and wrinkle. They always reminded me of the many lives she had touched with the “work of her hands”.

She held 9 babies in those sweet hands and felt the life go out of 3 of them as they breathed their last breaths in her arms. She lovingly held 15 grandchildren and 21 great grandchildren. She served God through her church and her community. She worked hard through the years making her children’s clothes, tending to the garden, canning and freezing the vegetables and fruits, quilting beautiful designs – stitch by stitch by hand, preparing meals for her large family, picking berries and apples, rolling many pie crusts, washing clothes and hanging them on the line, feeding our farm animals, and working alongside my dad and our family on the farm.

How much work those hands did. How much love they had given. The chaplain at the retirement home where she lived for almost 10 years used to say about her, “I’ve never known anyone who could so lovingly hug you with her hands.” She did so with everyone who came within her reach – loved ones, friends, the staff at the home, and complete strangers. We all were the recipients of her gracious, gentle spirit.

How I would love to see and hold those hands once again. And how I would love to see her holding her beloved Bible as she placed her finger under each verse as she read those words she so loved. What a beautiful image that has left in my memory.

Sometimes the work we do with our hands will matter in ways we may never see and cannot begin to imagine. God’s favor and blessing may be upon the work we do and it may touch lives in significant and meaningful ways. God wants us to be His hands in this world that is so in need of a loving touch. He wants us to join Him in the work He is doing and always give Him our best efforts. He will establish and lead us to do the work He has for us to do. What feelings of worth and accomplishment we can have as we use the talents and abilities God has given us. How grateful we can be for the work we have to do.

May we too see ways that we are serving others with our hands and embracing life with the work that is before us. May He use our hands today to show His love to others.


Dear Lord, how much we take the gift of our hands for granted. We thank you for the opportunity to work, be productive, serve you, and love others with “the work of our hands”. Amen

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