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The Touch of the Master’s Hand

The Touch of the Master’s Hand

At some point, we all get to feeling burnt out … like life’s passed us by. Doesn’t matter how successful we are or appear to be.  It hits us all sometime. We look at all those smart, clever, brilliant people all around us and kind of figure that God must be done with us.

Well, today I want to share this with you … that’s simply not true!

Moses was a burnt out, 80 year old wreck – a fugitive – tending sheep out back and beyond, when God tapped him on the shoulder. (Exodus 3)

And young Timothy, the Apostle Paul’s protégé, was going through a tough time in ministry when Paul wrote to him, reminding him – despite his circumstances – to rekindle the gift that was within him. (2 Tim 1:6,7)

I’ve recorded a series of radio messages called Rekindling the Flame – because young or old, God does have a mighty plan for your life, He is in the business of bringing it to pass and I believe that He wants each one of us to lay hold of that plan with our very lives.

So let me encourage you to have a listen or download the transcripts.

But first, if you’re feeling a bit worn out … or passed by … then perhaps today what you really need, is the touch of the Master’s hand:

‘Twas battered and scarred, and the auctioneer
  Thought it scarcely worth his while
To waste much time on the old violin,
  But held it up with a smile.
“What am I bidden, good folks,” he cried,
  “Who’ll start the bidding for me?”
“A dollar, a dollar. Then two! Only two?
  Two dollars, and who’ll make it three?”

 “Three dollars, once; three dollars, twice;
  Going for three…” But no,
From the room, far back, a grey-haired man
  Came forward and picked up the bow;
Then wiping the dust from the old violin,
  And tightening the loosened strings,
He played a melody pure and sweet,
  As a carolling angel sings.

The music ceased, and the auctioneer,
  With a voice that was quiet and low,
Said: “What am I bid for the old violin?”
  And he held it up with the bow.
“A thousand dollars, and who’ll make it two?
  Two thousand! And who’ll make it three?
Three thousand, once; three thousand, twice,
  And going and gone,” said he.

The people cheered, but some of them cried,
  “We do not quite understand.
What changed its worth?” Swift came the reply:
  “The touch of the Master’s hand.”
And many a man with life out of tune,
  And battered and scarred with sin,
Is auctioned cheap to the thoughtless crowd
  Much like the old violin.

A “mess of pottage,” a glass of wine,
  A game — and he travels on.
He is “going” once, and “going” twice,
 He’s “going” and almost “gone.”
But the Master comes, and the foolish crowd
  Never can quite understand
The worth of a soul and the change that is wrought
  By the touch of the Master’s hand.

(The poem ‘The Touch of the Master’s Hand’ was written by Myra ‘Brooks’ Welch)


  1. Hello Berni – it was truly a great story and I admit there are times when I feel like that, but I do praise God that He has not forgotten me. I am so glad He sent His Son to be my own personal Saviour. Greg.

  2. Hi Berni,
    Thank you so much for your obedience in bringing this ministry to us all. Your series on Ruth-the Moabitess, helped me through one of the toughest times when the Lord was giving me faith to believe for my marriage.We had been separated for 5years and now He has brought us together in a new way, all of Him!
    His message in your voice held me steady, especially in the dark watches of the night when we can be so wobbly! We are not living together yet-that will be His next big step for us. I believe He is leading us gradually onto a firm foundation in Himself together.
    When we, and all around us would give up, the Lord is so merciful and kind to set our feet on a new path. That 5years was no picnic, but He was preparing us to receive and obey His will for our lives. First He said “See I am doing a new thing- can you not perceive it? I will make rivers in the desert, and a road in the wilderness for you”
    Then He said “You will live in joy and peace”! Imagine how wonderful this is for us! Also, and more importantly, He is vindicating His own Name in our marriage! Our unsaved families are astonished! The undeniable evidence of God’s real love for marriage and for His people is before their eyes every day! Wow What a Good God we serve!!!
    Be encouraged Family of God – HE HAS A PLAN FOR YOUR LIFE – YES YOU!!!!!!!
    With love in Christ,
    Be blessed Berni,

  3. Lyn, Truly loved the poem, it never fails to amaze me just how many times we are touched by the Father’s hand in our lives. The message is not to be too busy to realise who is touching you and why!
    God Bless you, May God refresh you and continue to bless you.

  4. Hi Berni,

    Love your program and your approach to how you share your faith. I was starting to think all the ‘Successful’ Christian preachers out there were full of them self’s or so out of touch, that….? Any way well done and a very grateful thank you.

    Craig Boyle

  5. Thanks Bernie,

    I first heard this poem as a song by Aliki – very powerful rendition that bought tears to my eyes, and still does every time I hear it. It is also a very timely message, as God has shown me a vision for my life, but like you, being in poor financial position for my age (in my 50’s), I feel powerless to fulfil this plan, and feel discouraged by that sometimes, even though I know God has the means to allow me to fulfil it. Thank you.


    • Gary

      thanks so much for sharing that. Fortunately, God specialises in impossible situations and the way I read my Bible, Jesus never, ever criticised anyone for having too much faith in Him (the exact opposite in fact). I think sometimes though we equate His approval and the degree to which we’re in His will, with a worldly template of success.

      Of course we do need funds to do things, and yet it amazes me how much can be achieved with little.

      I remember sitting with the Program Director of a large radio station in Europe who airs our programs, and she asked me how many people worked at Christianityworks. When I told her that our massive team was eight people, she almost fell off her chair. God as it turns out is very good at the fishes and loaves thing – mind you, He’s had a lot of practice!


      Every blessing,

  6. Bernie

    thanks for your timely message. As one of those six figure IT consultants, currently trying to survive on 4 hours sleep a night to meet customer expectations, I sometimes need a wake-up call. Looking forward to what God has for me to do (Ephesians 2:10)

    • Hi Leon

      great to hear from you. You could always try the gentile poverty of ministry instead of consulting, although you still only get 4 hours of sleep a night! LOL

      I just had a week away on a break, and it’s when we stop that we realise how hard we’ve been working. The risk is that we’re pedalling so hard doing all these good things, that we loose sight of the gifts that God’s put inside us that He meant for us to use for His glory.

      Psalm 127 Says it all for me:
      Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labour in vain. … It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil; for he gives sleep to his beloved.

      Don’t forget to make some time to smell the roses.

      Bless ya heaps

  7. Posted by Berni Dymet from an anonymous email respondent

    I’ll keep it brief, but the “battered old violin” is exactly where I am right now.

    I was brought up in a Christian household, and whilst I have always believed, but have never felt “the call”. I find myself in a relatively poor financial position for my age, and am at the age where my employer “allows people to leave with dignity” – I have no idea what I should be doing, but I do know that God has never been far away (that is obviously incorrect, as God is always there).

    I have been praying for a directional change in my life

    May The Lord richly bless you

  8. Just watched youtube, so I guess I know the answer now, but very inspiring and just what I needed today and all Gods people say


  9. Beautiful, did you write this glorious poem?

    • Faye,

      thanks. I wish. No I didn’t write the poem – it’s a classic. I forgot to put the poet’s name on the bottom when I posted this – but have now corrected that.


  10. here is the touch of the masters hand on youtube – very moving

  11. wow…..that’s all I can say. God is really speaking…I am sorry Berni. for some reason, I couldn’t listen to your message. I clicked to download, but nothing happened…judging by the time you posted this, have you been awake all night?

    • Vicki – thanks for that. The button takes you to a link where you can access the different messages – it’s not a straight download. Try this –>

      Yep – been up since about 3 am – having a great time. Fortunately I’ve always been an early riser. My mum tells me as soon as I was old enough to sleep in a bed rather than a cot, I was up at around 4 am. Lucky mum!!

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