A lovely promise seems to keep dropping into my thoughts lately, like a pebble that stirs rings of joy upon the waters of my days:
“The Lord will open to you His good treasure… and to bless all the work of your hands…” (Deut 28:12 NKJV).
All. The. Work. Of. Our. Hands.
For some reason, tonight, those words make me remember two tiny, sweetly-dimpled hands I watched recently… my friend’s five month old reaching out on her own to cup her Mama’s face and bestow a kiss.
I see again the sturdy hands of a proud new papa this weekend, engaging his firstborn son in the gift of a new book, dancing fingers across the over-sized pages, purposing to make his child part of the hospital room celebration to welcome his baby brother…
And that same little boy’s hands playfully wielding imaginary swordplay at me (accompanied by swishing noises) as I tried to steal a tickle across his back…
When somehow… I think I find… God’s fingerprints… right there. Blessing, hand to hand to hand.
In the truest sense, I’ve been praying this promise of favor upon the work of my hands lately. Asking Him to somehow use my hands, anoint them in ways that make others refreshed by His Light. His Hope. His Heart. In each word I write, in each pen & ink I sketch.
Not everything I write, or most everything I draw, will speak directly of Him…but I lift them up to His fingerprints. Remembering, treasuring the promise of Isaiah… I will rise my Glory on and through you… make you a light to set the captives free… Even in the office work or nondescript of everyday…
And the other night, as I studied two recent drawings I’ve done, something caught at my throat as I noticed a few details that I know I did not consciously put into them.
Not really being a professionally trained artist, I will often just fill in shading of say, trees or clouds, this way and that, using my pen like paintbrush strokes, following lines as I think they should be but not really with an engineered sense of knowing this is the way to do it.
Oh, I do know a few technical things from high school art classes or somewhere… rules like, if you want to make something come forward in the picture, you put the dark lines behind it. But in most cases I am just trusting my eye as I draw… studying the lines of photos I may be using… and maybe singing a praise song or two while I work. 🙂
I had been doing just that as I’d worked on these last two drawings… and praying for the people they were meant for. Asking Him to somehow make these sketches like a light of His presence in their homes in some way.
Now as I looked at the finalized pieces for like… maybe the fiftieth time… it was like finding those images you see in a cloud formation. I blinked. Looked again. Really? Was I just imagining…?
But no. Clear to me as anything, I could see something like the letters of J.E.S.U.S. in the shading of a tree. Not overly noticeable obviously, but it was there. Like a carving, on the trunk. I thought about how I’d just let my pen move this way and that as I’d made those lines, swirled up here, down there. And beside it, a darkened spot, like a scratch on an old tree trunk, in the shape of a small cross.
On the other drawing, in the fluff of clouds I’d drawn, I could see a shape like an Easter lily rising over the home, like a heavenly blessing. Again, not something I’d planned… but somehow it had evolved that way as I’d shaded here and there.
Just as though the Lord was letting me know. My intangible touch is on these. In your prayers for another. My imprint through the work of your hands… I move behind the scenes in blessing, when you do not know…
Don’t misunderstand me… I’m not talking some crazy kind of ghostly phenomena here, or like God taking my hand and moving it around for me. I don’t believe in that. But I do believe that He does take the work of our hands, lead us as we work, bless it to His purpose, sign His initials to it in ways we may not even know… especially as we do our work as unto Him…
The memory of something I’d heard artist Thomas Kincaid often talk about stirred in my thoughts then. How he’d loved to secretly work his wife’s initials into hidden spots in his paintings. A sort of love note tribute to her. I’d always loved that idea.
A whisper across my mind breezed like a revelation of one way God blesses all the work of our hands.
Your hands that prepare dinner and put it on the table for your loved ones, even when you are tired and cranky or world weary. Your hands that sew something for another, or pick something up for someone, or brush a child’s hair into a fresh new pony, or slip an arm around a lonely shoulder, or file papers at your desk, or do one of innumerable daily tasks that maybe seem mundane. Or write. Or draw. Or move a puzzle piece across a board. Or tickle a small tummy… plant a flower… brush away a tear.
In. All. The. Work. Of. Your. Hands. And mine.
Look for My fingerprints on yours, He is saying. For I am shining My favor on and through you…as you lift your hands to Mine...
Hidden as initials of love notes on your life.
© Pam Depoyan
Let us look for His Good Treasure on the work of our hands!
Would love to hear how He is blessing yours! 🙂
© Mill house… my drawing (Used to illustrate example of pen and ink here, though it is not one of those I specifically referenced in this story. 🙂 )
other photos: http://www.fotosearch.com