Safe Place

“Which of all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this? In his hand is the life of every living thing and the breath of all mankind.” (Job 12:9-10)

Do you need a fresh infusion of security, safety, protection? Consider the picture of being tucked in God’s capable, powerful hands.

“He’s got the whole world in his hands,” is not simply a sweet spiritual that we teach our kids. Rather, all through his written Word God makes it clear that his hands are large and totally in charge. He reveals this truth about himself for us to hold onto regardless of the other forces trying to break down our door or our nerves.

God’s opening story illustrates it: “Ah, Lord God. It is you who have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and by your outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you” (Jeremiah 32:17).  He made it clear that the rescue of his children from their bondage in Egypt came about through his “mighty hand” (Deuteronomy 7:8). Later, Nehemiah, who desperately needed help to rebuild the broken walls of Jerusalem, realized that the king he served responded graciously to his request only because “the good hand of my God was upon me” (Nehemiah 2:8).  

The psalmists echo similar praises: “You have a mighty arm; strong is your hand, high your right hand…If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me…The right hand of the LORD does valiantly, the right hand of the LORD exalts” (Psalm 89:13-15, 118:15-16, 139:9).

The prophets concurred. “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand…But now, O LORD, you are our Father; we are the clay, and you are our potter; we are all the work of your hand” (Isaiah 41:10, 64:8). “But the God in whose hand is your breath, and whose are all your ways, you have not honored” (Daniel 5:23). 

When Jesus came on the scene, his hands were used for the greatest good possible. Jesus took the loaves in his hands, blessed them, broke them, and fed the hungry multitudes. He spat on the ground, made mud, and then anointed the blind man’s eyes with his hands of healing. He tied a towel around his waist, washed the disciples’ well-worn feet, and dried them off with his compassionate hands.

Jesus’ hands actually touched lepers and for the untold numbers brought to his door “he laid his hands on every one of them and healed them” (Luke 4:40). Christ took Jairus’ daughter by the hand and raised her back to life. In Nain he touched the bier of the widow’s son and gave him back to his bereaved mother. In one of the most moving scenes in the gospels, when children were brought to Jesus “he took them in his arms and blessed them, laying his hands on them” (Mark 10:16).

We, too, are children of our gracious God. He welcomes us and ushers us close, his hands outstretched in our direction. His good hands are still the safest place to be.

Elizabeth A Mitchell

Photo Credit: Taylor Heery on Unsplash

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