I have my mother’s hands. The size, the shape of my fingers, the curve of my nails, they are all like hers.
I remember her when I reach out to brush my daughter’s hair away from her face or hold my granddaughter’s tiny hand to twirl her around to “Tale as Old as Time”. I remember her kindness, her gentleness.
I remember her clicking her nails against the kitchen table inching closer and closer to the kids when they were little, the way they would playfully bop her hand and she’d start over again with one less finger clicking like a crawdad with one less claw until at last it was just her gimpy thumb thumping across the table to jump up and spring all the other fingers back to life and make the children squeal and giggle.
My hands serve my friends, cooking and baking and holding the phone to encourage, patting their backs and lending them books and steering the car to mentor meetings.
My hands work hard for my family, washing dishes and folding clothes and mending boo-boos and cutting garlic and wiping tables and doing Sunday evening haircuts.
My hands minister to my husband, curling safe into his own because that is where they were created to be.
My hands draw me closer to my God, raised in worship and clapping in praise, turning worn Bible pages and scribbling notes and pieces of prayers in the night.
I like my hands most when they are serving others.
My hands hover above the keyboard, poised to press out words that help hurting women learn how to write their way through pain to healing and hope, to type out my own life experiences and share my story and connect with sisters and brothers all over the world who need to know God’s love and grace.
I like the way my hands softly brush away the tears of others with empathy and compassion, return to brush away my own as trials come and sadness falls, as life brings changes and my body moves through stages on its way through this world.
I like my hands. They are my mother’s hands that allow me to do my Father’s work and love on His children.
My prayer is that they will be remembered as gentle hands, giving hands, willing hands.
They are hands that will serve until they curl stilled and safe in the hand of the One who created them.
Until then, they are hands held out ever ready to clasp another in friendship, ever willing to be used.