April 25, 2011
by Pastor Robert Hellmann, St. Paul’s Ev. Lutheran Church, Montrose

Take a look at your hands. They are more than just a collection of fingers stuck on the end of your arm. They are a wonderful gift from God.

With your hands, you can write with a pen, grip a golf club or fishing pole, play a musical instrument, or help a child.

Some hands are more skilled than others.

A basketball in my hands is worth about $30, at least when it’s new. A basketball in LeBron James’ hands is worth millions of dollars. It depends on whose hands it’s in.

A wooden staff in my hands might retrieve something that fell behind the refrigerator. In Moses’ hands, his staff parted the Red Sea. It depends on whose hands it’s in.

A can of tuna and some bread in my hands might make a lunch. Two fish and five loaves in Jesus’ hands fed thousands. It depends on whose hands they’re in.

What about your hands? Are they hands that shoplifted something from a store? Or that scrawled obscenities on a wall somewhere? Or that were used to harm another person? Or that forged a signature on a check?

Too often, we have used our hands as tools to commit these or other sins. The result is that our hands are stained with the guilt of our sins. No matter how hard we scrub, the stain remains to condemn us before God.

But there are other hands. Nails in my hands might make a bird house. Nails in Jesus’ hands took away the guilt of the sins of the entire world.

The blood of Jesus, shed from his hands and feet, is the only agent that can cleanse our hands, our body, our soul for time and for eternity. The blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin. (1 John 1:7)

Now, as believers who are cleansed by Jesus, we can say in faith, “My times are in your hands.” (Psalm 31:15)

We are comforted when Jesus says, “I give them eternal life . . . no one can snatch them out of my hand.” (John 10:28)

We rejoice with David who said, “Clap your hands, all you nations; shout to God with cries of joy.” (Psalm 47:1)

With Paul, we lift up holy hands in prayer. (1 Timothy 2:8)

In times of crisis and death, we say, “Into your hands I commit my spirit.” (Luke 23:46)

So use your clean hands as tools to serve the Lord in faith and holiness and to serve others in Christian love.

In the hands of Jesus is the best place to be.