Hanging By a Thread

April 2, 2024

“For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all” (2 Corinthians 4:17, NIV).


We were chatting about his liver when I noted the fingers on his right hand. Three of them were 30 percent contracted with skin grafts. He had just been talking about his shop skills, so I asked him about the fingers and how he did so well with his shop work. “Oh, that was when I was young. I was in the passenger seat when we hit a hole and our car flipped over. My hand was on the car window sill. When we finished flipping, I looked down and three of my fingers were gone, the bones sticking out; then, I opened my hand and my fingers were there, each hanging on only by the skin. I walked for help, and a plastic surgeon in town put them back together. I can use ’em.”


Cut off and held only by skin, safe in the palm of his hand. Kind of a cool picture.


Ever been there? I have.


There are times in our lives where all the support and connections of the world are not enough. That which had been our lives was no longer recognizable. The support systems of our world had stepped aside to let us fall.


We feel like we are falling forever but then find ourselves caught and wrapped in the loving hands of God.


That fall and that feeling of landing in the arms of God, wrapped in the comfort of His hands, has not left me for 40 years. It was the greatest crisis of my spiritual life, the greatest crisis of my family’s life, and I would not trade it for all the years of comfort since.


Ever been there? Some of you have. Many of the patients and friends we love have been there. Some of my faith foundation rests there.


Perhaps this is a bit of what Jesus felt that day, torn from the world, torn from the Father, hanging only by the nails, waking up in the tomb, wrapped in His Father’s hands, the scars still there in hands that will hold me forever.


Dear God,

Thank you for your sacrifice.


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