Peter spoke up and said, “We have given up everything to follow you.” Jesus answered, “Truly, there is no one who has left house, or brothers or sisters, or father or mother, or children, or lands, for my sake and for the Gospel, who will not receive his reward. I say to you: even in the midst of persecution, he will receive a hundred times as many houses, brothers, sisters, mothers, children, and lands in the present time, and in the world to come eternal life. Do pay attention: many who now are the first will be last, and the last, first.”
The Durers of Nuremberg were poor and their father was hard working. Albrecht Durer, the oldest son, went to Venice, while Albert worked with his hands in the coal mines and helped his brother financially. After his graduation, Albrecht told Albert he can study now and would support him. Albert said, “Look what the mines have done to my hands! The bones in every finger have been smashed, my arthritic right hand prevents me from holding a glass to return your toast, and much less I can’t draw lines on canvas. No, brother, for me it is too late.”
To honor Albert for his great sacrifice, Albrecht lovingly drew his brother’s hands with palms and fingers stretched skyward in prayer. He called his phenomenal art “Hands,” (The Praying Hands).
The eyes are the soul’s windows and hands express the soul. “Dear God, I am so afraid to open my clenched fists … Who will I be when I stand before you with empty hands? Please help me to gradually open my hands and to discover that I am not what I own, but what you want to give me.” (H. Nouwen, The Only Necessary Thing: Living a Prayerful Life)
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