Engraved on God’s Hands
It is not uncommon for us to think at times that the Lord has forgotten us. Where is the job for which I have been praying so long? Where is the godly spouse for whom I have been searching so long? There are numerous other instances where we can get discouraged at times and wonder if God has forgotten us. To answer whether God has actually ever forgotten us, let’s look at His response to the complaint of Israel in Isaiah 49:14–16:
But Zion said, “The Lord has forsaken me; my Lord has forgotten me.” “Can a woman forget her nursing child, that she should have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget, yet I will not forget you. Behold, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are continually before me.”
In speaking of His care for us, God uses the image of a nursing mother. He asks, “Can a woman forget her nursing child?” And the immediate answer that one wants to give is, “No, a nursing mother will not forget her nursing child!” After all, the bond between an infant and her nursing mother is very strong. Physically and emotionally, a mother will be drawn to her nursing infant.
God is making the point that even if a mother were to forget her nursing child—something that is very unlikely to happen—He will not forget us, His people. God is absolutely committed to His children, and He will never ever forget a single one of them. God is perfect love, and He is absolutely faithful to His children.
In verse 16, God says, “Behold, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are continually before me.” The “walls” are a reference to the broken-down walls of Jerusalem while the Jews were in exile in Babylon. God is saying: “I see your life; I know exactly what is going on in your life. I am fully aware of the challenges and the difficulties that you are facing, and I will not forget you.”
If you want proof of God’s love for you, then look at the hands of Jesus. If you believe in Jesus Christ and have trusted in His substitutionary death on the cross for your salvation, then He has engraved you on the palms of His hands. Jesus will wear the wounds from the cross on His hands for all eternity. In Isaiah 53:5, God’s Word says, “But he was pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his wounds we are healed.” If you are ever wondering if God really loves you, then consider the pierced hands of Jesus; consider His substitutionary death on the cross for you personally.
Jesus has already done the most important thing for you, and that is giving His life on the cross so that you can live. Let us remember with great gratitude the words of John 15:13: “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.”