I recently attended the care of a lady in a local hospital who had been admitted for an infection requiring antibiotic treatment intravenously. She told me something on the day of her discharge from the hospital that was very humbling to me. Possibly detecting how busy I was that day in trying to get everything done, she asked if she could tell me something else as I was about to go out of the room to get her ready to go home. I came back to her bedside and she thanked me for taking the time to touch her area of infection and examine her with my hands. She thanked me for not treating her as someone not to be touched.
After thanking her, I left to go do her chart work needed, but I couldn’t seem to get that brief discussion off of my mind. The truth is that I really didn’t want to touch the area of concern for it certainly wasn’t pleasing to eye and it was infected, so it could possibly cause transmission to even occur to me. However, I felt compelled to directly use my hands anyway. It seemed like a small matter to me, but to this patient, it made a positive difference in her healing. However, in considering the truth in my own heart that I really hadn’t wanted to be that personal, but did so anyway, brought me to the point of getting teary eyed because I knew the answer to that contradiction. God had changed my heart and enabled me to do things that I would have never done otherwise. The more that I thought about it, the more humbled I became in knowing that no compliment I could ever receive has anything to do with me, but everything to do with Him. That one truth, a changed heart, is what I have been most thankful for during the season of thanksgiving.
Our touch upon others is something can that bless others if that touch is from the body of a believer in Jesus Christ. Also, that same hand can become a curse upon others if from the body of someone who doesn’t serve God. Before our hands ever move at all, our mind has to direct the manner in which they will move, and our mind’s direction is going to be influenced by the condition of our heart, our spirit.
We are created to have relationships with others, and with God, and that’s not going to be achieved through a disconnected, impersonal society in which we find ourselves now. For a wide array of reasons that are understandable, people in our day are more connected through various modes of communication now than ever before, but are more disconnected and isolated at the same time due to fear. To be more transparent, one is opened up to the criticism and rejection of others, so it is tempting to live in a shell with limited interactions with others. This is just what the enemy of our souls wants us to do. In turning ourselves over to God, we open up ourselves to being hurt over and over again as we are told to sacrifice ourselves. Jesus tells us to forgive over and over again while He can give us wisdom to know where, when, and how to use our hands for Him. We are supposed to direct our hands to do what He wants done and when we do, we can thank Him for making it possible.
Jesus told His disciples that He would empower them to do the works that He wanted done. After living long enough to have seen with my own eyes many miracles that He has done in the lives of others, some dramatic and others not quite as obvious, I know that He has work for all of us to do who claim His name. Our God is no respecter of persons and He is the same today as He has always been. After His disciples learned that Jesus wanted to use them and were filled with Holy Spirit, they became bold in speaking the truth and bold in their actions: “But Peter said, “I don’t have any money for you. But I’ll give you what I have. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, get up and walk!”” – Acts 3:6. The question for us to be sure we have answered is for what are we most thankful. Jesus’ small group of disciples was used in mighty ways to result in change for the entire world. We cannot afford in our day to think any less of what God can do through devoted disciples today. That same boldness to act is ready to be imparted to those who have the faith to believe in Jesus Christ.