February is of course, traditionally known as the month of love. But it doesn’t have to be all about romantic love right? On this first day of February, we’d like to share with you one of the stories included in God Allows U-Turns for Women by Allison Bottke and Cheryll Hutchings that talks about one of the greatest kinds of love that God has allowed us to experience – the love of family
My Family’s Hands
by Sharon Fink
Lyndsay, my beautiful granddaughter, is small for her six years. She has big blue eyes, long eyelashes, and soft curly dark hair. She has been the recipient of more prayers than most humans will ever receive. Her delicate hands have never been able to reach out to receive the wonders of this world. They lie curled up in her little bed. She has cerebral palsy. She doesn’t get to eat hot dogs or ice-cream cones. Her mom feeds her through a tube in her tummy. God knew she would need lots of special love, more than most children, so He chose her birthday carefully … Valentine’s Day.
Like Lyndsay, my father’s hands are now closed, too. He’s ninety. Only painful massages can unlock the hands that gave openly in ministry to his Lord for so many years. Alzheimer’s disease has cruelly closed his hands and his mind, but tears in his eyes and lips puckered to kiss, tell me his heart is still open. He taught my hands how to write and type on the old manual typewriter. I can still see his fingers curled just right on the middle row of keys. He didn’t show me the “hunt and peck” method, but the right way to move my fingers two rows up and one row down from the home rowasdfghjkl.
As I type this story, I look down at my hands and see my pinky finger curling just like his used to. I have the same kind of bumps on my knuckles he has.
My mother, close by in another section of the same nursing home where Dad resides, has a hand closed due to a stroke. It hurts her now to unlock those fingers. Those are the same nimble fingers that played the piano, combed my hair, and wiped my tears when I cried. Now I wipe her tears and stroke her crippled hand. She doesn’t know my name anymore, but she always has a smile for me.
I could choose to clench both fists and shake them at God in anger, asking Him why this happened to such dear, undeserving family members. Lyndsay is an innocent child with her whole life before her. Dad and Mom have blessed and been blessed by so many, they don’t deserve this kind of sunset years.
But God has used my loved ones as His instruments to unclench my own selfish fists. Their crippled hands have sent me running to my Father, my only source of hope. As I massage their hands, my hands begin to open wider to receive whatever God wants to give me, to thank Him for their lives, and hug those who can’t hug back. I choose, daily, to place my open hands into God’s nail-scarred hands to receive whatever He wants to place there. It’s not always easy, but I remember the wise words of Corrie ten Boom, a survivor of the Holocaust: “When we close our hands, we miss the many blessings God wants to place in them.”
Sometimes it’s too easy to find the wrong path. Before you know it, you’re headed down a road that shouldn’t be traveled. The good news is, there’s a U-turn up ahead—and many women before you have taken it.
This powerful collection of stories from real women encourages you in the face of difficult relationships, financial battles, serious illness or the death of a loved one.
God is waiting to help turn your life around. Are you ready for a U-turn?
God Allows U-Turns for Women is available at OMF Lit Bookshops nationwide for only P225