Grandma, some ninety plus years, sat feebly on the patio bench. She didn't
move, just sat with her head down staring at her hands. When I sat down
beside her she didn't acknowledge my presence and the longer I sat I
wondered if she was OK.
Finally, not really wanting to disturb her but wanting to check on her at
the same time, I asked her if she was OK. She raised her head and looked at
me and smiled. "Yes, I'm fine, thank you for asking," she said in a clear
"I didn't mean to disturb you, grandma, but you were just sitting here
staring at your hands and I wanted to make sure you were OK," I explained to
"Have you ever looked at your hands," she asked. "I mean really looked at
I slowly opened my hands and stared down at them. I turned them over, palms
up and then palms down. No, I guess I had never really looked at my hands as
I tried to figure out the point she was making.
Grandma smiled and related this story:
"Stop and think for a moment about the hands you have, how they have served
you well throughout your years. These hands, though wrinkled, shriveled and
weak have been the tools I have used all my life to reach out and grab and
"They braced and caught my fall when as a toddler I crashed upon the floor.
They put food in my mouth and clothes on my back. As a child my mother
taught me to fold them in prayer. They tied my shoes and pulled on my boots.
They held my husband and wiped my tears when he went off to war.
"They have been dirty, scraped and raw, swollen and bent. They were uneasy
and clumsy when I tried to hold my newborn son. Decorated with my wedding
band they showed the world that I was married and loved someone special.
They wrote my letters to him and trembled and shook when I buried my parents
"They have held my children and grandchildren, consoled neighbors, and shook
in fists of anger when I didn't understand.
"They have covered my face, combed my hair, and washed and cleansed the rest
of my body. They have been sticky and wet, bent and broken, dried and raw.
And to this day when not much of anything else of me works real well these
hands hold me up, lay me down, and again continue to fold in prayer.
"These hands are the mark of where I've been and the ruggedness of life. But
more importantly it will be these hands that God will reach out and take
when he leads me home. And with my hands He will lift me to His side and
there I will use these hands to touch the face of Christ."
I will never look at my hands the same again. But I remember God reached out
and took my grandma's hands and led her home.
When my hands are hurt or sore or when I stroke the face of my children and
husband I think of grandma. I know she has been stroked and caressed and
held by the hands of God.
I, too, want to touch the face of God and feel His hands upon my face.
-- Author Unknown