Hands of the Carpenter from Nazareth

Matthew 19:13 – Then were there brought unto him little children, that he should put his hands on them, and pray…

Years in a carpenter’s shop had taken its toll on Jesus’ hands. They were likely handscalloused and rough. They had felt the pain of a splinter. Did the Son of God ever miss the nail and smash His finger? I’m not sure, but I do know His hands were the hands of a carpenter.

But, they were unlike the hands of any other carpenter. How could they be so calloused and rough also be so gentle and tender? How could the touch of a hand so accustomed to wood, be able to reach into the spirit of a man? When His disciples were sore afraid, He simply touched them and said, “Be not afraid” and the fear melted away.

They were no ordinary hands. With His hands, He broke and blessed a boy’s lunch, multiplying a few loaves and fish until it was enough to satisfy a multitude. When Peter was sinking in the darkness of Galilee’s sea, it was Jesus’ hands of grace and compassion that lifted him up. Jesus reached down and scooped up a handful of soil, mixed it with spittle, then daubed the earthy paste on a blind man’s eyes bringing him the miracle of sight.

They were not just any hands. A heartbroken woman, with a tearful parade of grieving loved ones, was following the casket of her only son. Jesus stopped the procession and touched the bier. Death could not resist the life in those hands – the dead boy sat up and began to speak! Jesus’ hands were unafraid of the dreaded disease – they touched the leper and brought healing and hope. They were the hands that touched Peter’s mother-in-law and healed her of a fever.

hands and feetThey were no ordinary hands. Those hands reconnected a severed ear from a bewildered priest. Those hands took water and towel and washed the disciple’s feet. Those hands took up a whip and drove out the moneychangers who were defiling the House of God. They were hands like none other. They were the hands that Roman soldiers would stretch on a wooden cross and drive nails through.

It’s no wonder parents brought their children to Jesus and asked Him to put His hands upon them. They were hands of healing and restoration. Power and authority flowed from His hands. Life and hope were in His hands. Lay your hands on my children and bless them, they asked.

We’ve all commented of someone that “the hand of God is on them!” We’ve all prayed ourselves and said, “God, put your hand on my life.” May we never pray that prayer lightly! It’s more than a figure of speech. I truly believe the Carpenter of Nazareth can put His hand upon us. If I know His hand is upon me, then I know I’ll be alright. If just a measure of the anointing and power that flowed from His hands would be upon us, we would fear no assignment or any devil that opposed it. In Acts 11:21, the Bible says, “And the hand of the Lord was with them: and a great number believed, and turned unto the Lord.” If the hand of the Lord is with us, no task would be too great and no barriers would hold us back.

Like a master potter who shapes the clay with a skillful hand, I want His hand to mold me into His image.

If He would put His hand upon us, it would surely transform every facet of our lives – our spirit, our speech, our smile, our compassion for others, our thinking, our prayer, our worship and our calling. I want His hand on me! I want His fingerprints all over my life, ministry and family. Like a master potter who shapes the clay with skillful hand, I want His hand to mold me into His image. Like wood in the hands of a carpenter, I want Him to take my life and make something glorious out of it.

Ask Him today, “Jesus, put your hand on me!” When the disciples sent the parents away, Jesus rebuked the disciples and said bring the children to Me. I will put My hands on their lives. If you will ask, He will not send you away. He is not too busy to lay His nail-scarred hands upon your life today.

~Matthew Ball