I always warned my sons not to hold a young woman’s hand until they were very serious about her and their relationship. It may seem a simple thing, I would tell them, but it’s an intimate act that conveys a sense of being a couple. A togetherness if you will. A belonging.
I remember the first time a young man, a boy really, held my hand. I was young and teetering on the edge of falling in love for the first time when he took my hand. Shivers ran from his fingers to mine and up my arm to my whole body. What was this feeling, I marveled? That handholding toppled me over to a free fall.
I love holding my husband’s hand. There’s a way that we’ve done it for 38 years. My right in his left. When we switch it up it feels unnatural and I quickly dash to the other side. We fit together. His hand in mine. Mine in his. It’s a holding on that conveys much more than the lacing of fingers.
I read this morning in John, chapter Ten, verses 28 and 29 where Jesus was trying to explain to his unbelieving listeners that He and the Father are one. One. In complete union. He says that those the Father has chosen He holds in His hand and nothing can take them out of His hand. Jesus too says that they are in His hand and nothing can take them out. He is holding on with an unbreakable love.
He is not merely holding hands with us; He is holding all of us. We are together. Intertwined. Intimately held. We belong to Him and with Him. His promise that we are held forever and that nothing can take us out of His hand conveys His faithful, unchangeable heart of love. He’s very serious about us. He’s very serious about you. He’s committed. And he’s never letting go.