Hands are a powerful image. There is the gentleness of a couple holding hands as in our photo today. Hands also convey power, strength, care, nurture, and even destruction.
I look at my hands, and I see echo’s of my dad’s hands and in his hands now that he is older, I see my grandfather’s hands. In my sisters, I can see my mother’s hands, especially when I see them putting on lotion at the same time, it’s kind of weird to see them do this.
Our devotional asked; “In what ways do you use your hands throughout the day?” The list would be far too long and varied ever to complete. But it got me to thinking. Not everyone has hands. I remember vividly seeing a prosthetic hook on a farmer’s hand as a youth. Boy did that cause me to wonder, and it was a little scary to me. Now here is the deal, scripture talks about the hand or hand of God hundreds of times. Do I think God has hands just like mine? Does he scratch his head in wonder at the mess the work of his hands has wrought on the earth? I really don’t know.
What I know is this, God is active. That is really the point of the use of the term hand.
When God’s hands are invoked, it means God is doing something. In our reading from Jeremiah today, it seems to be about some convoluted real estate deal. It took some time to ponder the context to figure out what was going on and why it was tied to the word of the day Hands. I think I have a possibility here. If I remember correctly things were about to get real bad for Isreal. This land transaction then is more of a sign that God is still at work than it is a shrewd investment.
Jeremiah says “Nothing is to hard for you” in verse 17 while listing the works of God’s hands. Yet, by the time we reach verse 23 we are not so sure that is true. In verse 25 Jeremiah essentially says, though it seems all is lost, I put my trust in your hands.
When we live our lives knowing that we are held securely in God’s hands we are able to take leaps of faith, to put our hands to work, and trust that God is active and engaged even when things seem to be so hopeless, for in God’s hands there is always hope.