In this familiar painting from the Cistine Chapel, Michelangelo portrays God giving life to Adam through the touch of his finger. A new life form was created when the hand of God touched man.
We have a much different understanding of finger-pointing. When someone points a finger at us, judgmental or accusing words soon follow. These can pierce our hearts and cause unseen damage if we don’t quickly pull them out by forgiving the offender. If we meditate on offenses, allow them to fester, and begin to believe them, they adversely affect all of our relationships. Anger, bitterness, and suspicion, to name a few, may all eventually surface.
Finger-pointing has been ramping up lately. The media savors a good argument because it sells news, so finger-pointing has been amplified even more. But what if every time we start to point the finger we think instead about how God pointedly gave us life? What if we pray about how to deliver life-giving words instead of judgments or criticism? Being right isn’t the main thing. Loving others is the main thing. Pointing a finger can be done from afar. We don’t have to put ourselves in the other”s situation in order to pass judgment. It’s easy. When we choose to touch someone, though, we humble ourselves and listen to who they are. We honor them, even if we don’t agree with them. That’s hard. But it’s also the high road. And we accomplish a lot more when we touch one another with life.