Comfort in the Midst of Tragedy
by Terri Bonin
I’m still thinking about hands.
Last week I reflected on how much I LOVE the hands of those who belong to me and the work they accomplish. To name a few, I pondered my dad’s music, my mom’s sewing, my husband’s gentle dentistry…but… those are the tangible works of their hands, works that produce a product we can enjoy, but nevertheless, a product that fades overtime.
BUT here’s the cool thing: Tangible works may fade, but the abstract result of the act will carry on long past the life of the hands that performed the deed. I know this is true because I’ve seen it over, and over, and over again. When we do the tangible work God calls us to do, whether big or small, the act actually knits something wonderful inside of others.
Our good friend and neighbor was tragically killed in a motorcycle accident this past week. Our hearts are broken.
He was snatched from…
…this world before we were finished living life with him. However, even in the face of this tragedy we find comfort to know that the works of his hands will continue for eternity. Rick was a doctor and he used his hands to administer care in third world countries such as Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands. My daughter, Madeleine, had the privilege of working alongside him on one of his trips and she experienced his untiring, cheerful way with the natives. Rick knew that these people would not care to hear the gospel until they received loving help, so he used his hands to reach their hearts.
When Rick was home he used his hands to beautify his yard or cook dinner for the neighbors. These simple deeds spoke of an appreciation for life… As I look out my window at the bright orange and pink flowers he planted last week, I know that while the flowers may die off, the effect of his life, or the abstract result of the work of his hands, will not fade.
I definitely want that to be said of my life, too…
When I pray as I do often, “Establish the works of my hands Oh Lord.”(Ps 90:17) God knows I want something MORE than a skillfully prepared meal, a well dressed family, a successful business, or simply beautiful surroundings. I’m asking for a generations that, because of the work I did in obedience to Him, and the prayers I prayed, will carry on with:
Actions not only speak louder than words, but they speak LONGER. Consider the works of your hands. I know I am. I’m evaluating each activity I put my hands to these days. If your hands peck away at a phone or a screen more than they touch others, ask yourself the hard questions. If today was my last day on earth and I had my life to do over again, what would I change?
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