The other day I was helping put up a ceiling fan. We had to work with our hands above our heads; and quickly, it became very tiring. Soon, all the blood ran out of our arms and our hands got numb. Our shoulders ached and muscles we didn’t even know we had, cried out in rebellion.
We don’t often hold our hands up for very long periods of time. It isn’t the natural relaxed state for our bodies.
In Exodus, while Moses held up his hands, his army had victory. When his hands dropped, they began to lose. Moses needed help. Two assistants came to help him by bracing his arms so his hands could remain uplifted. And his troops gained a victory!
In 3 of the Psalms, David records that he raised his hands to God. And in I Timothy, we’re told to raise our holy hands in prayer. So in the Bible, it seems holding up your hands is a good thing.
If this is pleasing to God, why didn’t he create us like that? It would have been a simple thing for Him to do. After all, trees lift their branches. It’s their normal position – a stature of having extremities raised heavenward.
I think it’s because He wants our lifted hands to be voluntary – our choice. It’s a way of offering praise. And it’s a way of asking for the gifts He’s prepared for us: salvation, blessings, answers to prayer, in a posture of readiness to receive them.
Too many times, we go around with our hands clenched in anger, fear or frustration — or just trying to hold on to what we have. So that when we pray, we are unable to receive what God wants to give us.
Because to receive, you have to open your hands.
I like the song written and recorded by Sandi Patty I Lift My Hands To You because it encourages me to lift my hands. Join me, lift your hands to God – showing Him that you’re ready to receive the blessings and answers to prayer He has for you today.