Written by Maren Tirabassi
" . . . and I have filled him with the spirit of God, with ability, intelligence, and knowledge in every kind of craft." - Exodus 31:1-11
Until my son Matt became a master bicycle mechanic, I didn't know there was such a trade. Not a job, a trade. The technology, tools and technical expertise translate as well to most gym equipment . . . and to wheelchairs. At his shop they tune up and repair wheelchairs for free.
God asked Moses to set aside and consecrate Joshua's nephew Bezalel and his friend Oholiab because of their gifts of stone-cutting, woodwork, metallurgy, and fabric arts. They were going to create the tent of the ark of the covenant and its furnishings. Five chapters of Exodus are devoted to the details of their crafts. They shaped furnishings, vestments, curtains, a table, a lampstand, and a mercy seat. God said, "I have given skill to all the skillful."
This is a wonderful day to celebrate the spirit of God in every kind of craft. All around our churches and our communities are quilt makers and auto body mechanics, plumbers and watercolorists, potters and pipe fitters. Some of us use God's hand-y skills for amateur activities; some of us use our gifts for employment. Many of us are fortunate enough to be able to do both. Let's give ourselves a hand!
God, take my hands and let them be – consecrated to you, every bit as much as my head and my heart. Amen.