Words of Hope: The Body Remembers

One day, I was wiping down the bathroom sink. Focused and intensely absorbed in my work, I didn’t hear my oldest daughter Natalya come into the room. She came up behind me and hugged me. Her hand rested on my chest just below my collar bones, and she leaned her head against mine. 

Her hand felt like a hot brand on my skin. I yelled out in pain. She jumped back, startled, and said, “Mom, I am just trying to hug you.” I felt embarrassed and confused. “Honey, I am so sorry. I don’t know what happened, but your touch felt like a burn to me.” I felt rattled by the experience. After reflecting on my day, I realized I had experienced two desolating emails at work. I had received them one after another. I hadn’t acknowledged the hurt of these emails but had jumped back into work, totally disassociating my emotions and moving forward. But my body remembered. The pain was still there, present in my chest.

I was hurting, and I didn’t even feel it. It wasn’t until I came face to face with life and encountered the touch of a loving child that my body could remember to be human again. Is it any wonder that Jesus touched people to make them well? I picture Jesus spitting on the ground, creating a form of mud paste with his hands and then putting this on the eyes of the blind man. He reaches out and touches the lepers, something forbidden. He took children in His arms, blessing them and laying His hands on them in prayer. Did the bodies of these people remember the touch of God upon their lives—does healing come as we return to this loving touch? 

As Dad lay dying, touch was a very present part of the journey. We stroked his hair and held his hand. Mom held him; Shann put his huge hand on my Dad’s side and told him, “Jesus is walking, walk with Him.” I believe touch helped usher my Dad into the presence of God, and I believe the touch of God now, through the healthy love of family and friends, brings us into His presence.

“Jesus had compassion on them and touched their eyes. Immediately they received their sight and followed him.” – Matthew 20:34