by, 02-13-2013 at 02:49 PM (643 Views)
As far back as I can remember her hands were in a bowl of flour, mixing up another batch of biscuits. I used to think they were the best in the world, big and fluffy. If it wasnít a bowl of flour, her hands were busy in loads of laundry, perpetual cleaning, frying up massive meals in an iron skillet to feed a family of six, or most importantly, about her Fatherís business. I can hardly remember a time when she didnít have her hands busy doing something. No matter how hard the years had become, she never gave up on her children. Iím sure we gave her plenty of reasons to, but she was committed to us; determined to love us unconditionally.
When I recently found myself reading the book of Isaiah, it amazed me the love God has for His children and the way He constantly calls them to Himself. He is so committed to them. So much so, that He says He tattooed a picture of them on the palms of His hands. Iíd like to think if I tattooed someoneís picture or their name on my palms, it would be because I wanted it in my view easily at anytime I wished and to have the feeling that I could hold them near just by bringing my hands close to myself. Godís commitment to His people was not based on their performance or any good they had done; it was simply love.
Now my mom wasnít the tattoo type, but if she had the chance to put a picture of the ones she was committed to on the palms of her hands, Iíd have to believe it would be her children. Not because of anything we had done or our performance, but simply out of love. Perhaps she wanted to draw those faces close to her during the times of desperation that raising five children alone can bring. I wonder if she pulled her hands away from a sewing machine to bring them close to her chest when she wanted to feel us near during the long hours of a mundane workday. Did she hold a crying face into those hands as her hot tears spilled over our images while she pondered our school needs, our weddings, and our decision to follow Christ? Did she lift those same hands up to God in intercession for us as if to show Him our faces and remind Him of His promises? Did she too, like Jesus, bear the marks on her hands as a memento of the ones she loved and the whole of her life she gave for them?
When Mom went home to be with the Lord on Valentineís Day of 2012, she was still busy with her hands up until that time. She had battled years of cancer and numerous other diagnoses, all the while surmounting each grim prognosis. Now I like to think of her at home with her Lord maybe even looking at the tattoos on His hands; sharing memories together of their sacrifice for each one of those forever faces imprinted like the permanent ink of an earthly tattoo on the palms of their hands, and when their fingers gently slide across the image of my face, maybe theyíll whisper again their sweet promise to me that I, in their eyes, will never be forgotten.
Behold I have indelibly imprinted (tattooed a picture of) you on the palm of each of My hands; [O Zion] your walls are continually before Me. Isaiah 49:16