A few years ago, twins were born. One was healthy. The other had a serious heart condition and was not expected to live. The stricken child’s condition worsened within a few days. She appeared to be close to death. Then, a hospital nurse put both babies in the same incubator. Without any prompting, the healthy baby put his arm under his sister’s body and touched it with his hand. Within hours, her heart slowed from its previously over-rapid pace. Her blood pressure lowered to near-normal. Her body temperature leveled. Little by little, this little baby healed. Today, she thrives.
Such is the power of helping, healing hands. That healthy baby had it, and so do we. Sometimes, we need to be recipients of helping, healing hands. At other times, we have the chance to tap the power of our hands to help and heal others.
We have such an opportunity on Sunday, November 24th after the worship service. Both the Elders of Old First and the members of the Sacred Circle will be folding and organizing donated clothing that will be given away to persons currently living in our community without a home.
We would like you to join us in doing this good work.
Truth be told, this humble work won’t make front page headlines in the newspaper. It probably won’t inspire an imaginative blog entry. Nevertheless, it will make the work of clothing someone easier, and it will make it possible to serve more persons more expeditiously. No less than Jesus called us to use our hands to do this humble work: “I was naked and you clothed me,…” (Mt. 25:36) in the hope that we would respond affirmatively.
I invite you, my fellow Old Firsters, to join us on November 24th about fifteen minutes after the service ends. We will plan to work between 60 and 90 minutes. Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel, who marched in Selma with Martin Luther King Jr. against segregation commented afterward that during the demonstration he felt as if his legs were praying. Perhaps, as we fold and organize those clothes, we, like that healthy baby in the story, will feel as if we are praying with our hands.