Yesterday, I turned my hands palm up and was a little surprised at what I saw. My hands were not the hands I remember from my youth- They were like Hubert Yankee's hands!!! Now, Hubert lived around the block from us in Valley Falls and he was a mechanic at Thompson's mill (which processed burlap). He was a quiet man, respected for both his sensibility and abilities. These things were only exceeded by his kindness and generosity. Most of all though, I remember his hands. Worn, scarred from decades of hard use, they were filled with the most pronounced lines I have ever seen in a human being. Somehow, those lines seemed etched his heart as well. For of all the people who lived near the bridge in Valley Falls, I remember him the most. In reality he was an unimportant, hard working mechanic, but to me he was a model of everything a husband and father should be. And then I remembered the words of the sixteenth Psalm...
1 Preserve me, God, for in you do I take refuge.
2 My soul, you have said to Yahweh, “You are my Lord.
Apart from you I have no good thing.”
3 As for the saints who are in the earth,
they are the excellent ones in whom is all my delight.
4 Their sorrows shall be multiplied who give gifts to another god.
Their drink offerings of blood I will not offer,
nor take their names on my lips.
5 Yahweh assigned my portion and my cup.
You made my lot secure.
6 The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places.
Yes, I have a good inheritance.
7 I will bless Yahweh, who has given me counsel.
Yes, my heart instructs me in the night seasons.
8 I have set Yahweh always before me.
Because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.
9 Therefore my heart is glad, and my tongue rejoices.
My body shall also dwell in safety.
10 For you will not leave my soul in Sheol,
neither will you allow your holy one to see corruption.
11 You will show me the path of life.
In your presence is fullness of joy.
In your right hand there are pleasures forever more.
This English Rose is beautiful to me; not only for the quality of the picture, but for the lines. You see, if a life is lived with God, then it changes you, molds you and you change into a creation of The Almighty. Your lines, whether on the face, hands or anywhere are just an indication that you have lived. And if God is with you, you have an inheritance, a blessing, a future!!!
1 Peter, Chapter 1
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to his great mercy became our father again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an incorruptible and undefiled inheritance that doesn’t fade away, reserved in Heaven for you, 5 who by the power of God are guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
May you live with the daily presence of the Almighty and may your lines be beautiful!!!
PS. Here is a picture of Valley Falls, New York from the 19th century- We lived on the left side of the bridge, on the North side (Thompson's mill [built after this photo]) was on the right...