‘the hand of hope’

 The Hand of Hope

Story of the “Fetal Hand Grasp” Photograph

As a veteran photojournalist in Nashville, Tennessee, I was hired by USA Today newspaper to photograph a spina bifida corrective surgical procedure. It was to be performed on a twenty-one week old fetus in utero at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. At that time, in 1999, twenty-one weeks in utero was the earliest that the surgical team would consider for surgery. The worst possible outcome would be that the surgery would cause premature delivery, and no child born earlier than twenty-three weeks had survived.

The tension could be felt in the operating room as the surgery began. A typical C-section incision was made to access the uterus, which was then lifted out and laid at the junction of the mother’s thighs. The entire procedure would take place within the uterus, and no part of the child was to breach the surgical opening. During the procedure, the position of the fetus was adjusted by gently manipulating the outside of the uterus. The entire surgical procedure on the child was completed in 1 hour and thirteen minutes. When it was over, the surgical team breathed a sigh of relief, as did I.

As a doctor asked me what speed of film I was using, out of the corner of my eye I saw the uterus shake, but no one’s hands were near it. It was shaking from within. Suddenly, an entire arm thrust out of the opening, then pulled back until just a little hand was showing. The doctor reached over and lifted the hand, which reacted and squeezed the doctor’s finger. As if testing for strength, the doctor shook the tiny fist. Samuel held firm. I took the picture! Wow! It happened so fast that the nurse standing next to me asked, “What happened?” “The child reached out,” I said. “Oh. They do that all the time,” she responded.

The surgical opening to the uterus was closed and the uterus was then put back into the mother and the C-section opening was closed.

It was ten days before I knew if the picture was even in focus. To ensure no digital manipulation of images before they see them, USA Today requires that film be submitted unprocessed. When the photo editor finally phoned me he said, “It’s the most incredible picture I’ve ever seen.”

– Michael Clancy- http://www.michaelclancy.com/


At the inception of the earthly ministry of Jesus of Nazareth, the scripture tells us that He left Nazareth and came and dwelt in Capernaum which is upon the sea coast, in the borders of Zabulon and Nephthalim, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet saying, “The land of Zabulon and the land of Nephthalim, by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles; the people which sat in darkness saq great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up.” Matthew 4: 13-16

Light Shines in Darkness:

The scripture tells us that the light came into the world and though the world was made by Him, it knew Him not. Jesus the Christ, came unto His own, but His own received Him not. Though he had done so many miracles before them, yet they believed not on him….

The Light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not!


Light has come into the world, but me loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil, for every one that doth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.”

When I first heard the above testimony by Michael Clancy and his work:  ‘The Hand of Hope’, I thought to myself, how amazing is the grace of God that He continues in this day to bring forth light (manifest truth), thereby thwarting the lies and works of darkness our society is immersed therein.

After seeing this EVIDENCE OF LIGHT manifested in Michael’s work, how can a nation continue to deny that a child encapsulated in the safety of it’s mother’s womb, is in fact a living human being?

For the rest of the story, read The Controversy Behind The Picture; http://www.michaelclancy.com/story.html#slideshow. Not all that witnessed this miraculous event received the light of the moment.

The Light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not!

Truth was brought to light but the instruments of darkness continue to  reject light and suppress the truth… as it was from the beginning.

It is pretty obvious that the medical profession and Life Magazine had an agenda and they were more interested in showing how far medical science had progressed in the twentieth century, in utero fetal surgery, than giving credence to life, and that in accordance to the truth of God’s word…

“Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.” Jeremiah 1:5

This rejection of truth (light) in order to give place to a lie is not uncommon. God’s word gives us a vivid picture of this. It is found in the 22nd chapter of 1 Kings.

Ahab is the king of the northern kingdom in Samaria and Jehoshaphat is king in Judah. Ahab petitions Jehoshaphat that he will go with him to battle in Ramoth-gilead against the king of Syria.

Before Jehoshaphat agrees, he request that Ahab “enquire at the word of the Lord”. So Ahab summoned all of his prophets, those who would speak to his liking. Of course they prophesied that he would go up and the Lord would deliver it (Ramoth-gilead) into the hand of the king. 

Jehoshaphat was not as gullible. He petitioned Ahab that a true prophet of the Lord be summoned. So a true prophet of the Lord, Micaiah, was commissioned. Micaiah’s final prophecy was not liken to the prophets of Ahab, as he prophesied that this battle would result in Ahab’s death.

Now Ahab has a decision to make… truth or a lie…. light or darkness? He chose the lying spirit in the mouth of all of his prophets.

When a man chooses to believe a lie for political or financial reasons, God will send that same lying spirit to satisfy that ones wilful rejection of truth.

Light has come into the world, but me loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil, for every one that doth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.”

Wilful rejection of the truth yields the spirit of a strong delusion. We are a nation that is immersed in the same.

The life that reached forth from his mother’s womb at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in 1999 would be 10 year old today. God gave Michael Clancy the opportunity to witness and document this miraculous testimony. The question is………… will it be light or darkness? 

An Update on Samuel Armas “The Hand of Hope”
National Right to Life News ^ | 10-31-03 | Jonathan Imbody

Posted on Friday, October 31, 2003 9:53:55 PM by cpforlife.org

“The Hand That Touched The World” Nearly Four Years Later

Malachi 3:10

Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.

When a nation, a society, or an individual are obedient to God and His word, God’s hand will reach down and they shall find blessing… and there will not be enough room to receive it.

Choose life….



  1. A picture says a thousand words (David Gates) or as Gordon H. Clark expressed that sometimes a picture needs a thousand words.

    God’s hand!

    • Oh Eric, how true. I was traveling to North Georgia when I heard Michael’s testimony and my heart wept a ‘thousand tears’ for all the innocent lives that have ended at the hand of Molech.

      Yet in the light all of this evidence there continues to be a spirit of darkness and blatant rejection of God’s word.

      I praise the Lord that Michael Clancy was present when God chose to reveal His hand in the life of Samuel, and that he had an unwavering conviction to share it with the world.

      Pray for those considering life and death.

  2. The light under the bushel and draw the blinders by siting down to feast with the harlot and the atheistic-biologists who profess nature to be eternal and reject the innerbeing have always been with us as the two are caught in a war. Yet, what my pastor said to me a few weeks back sounds like a bell in the tower of my heart…”GREATER is HE who is in me that he who is in the world” If they had known and believed in the spiritual life and the communion of the Beloved and the Lover of our souls, they would not have killed the Lord of Glory..or matyred his children, or continued to shed the blood of the little ones. When Naturalist takes the blinders OFF…they will see what they have done and then their will be mourning and weeping and hopefully repentance before the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.


    • You have faithfully attached the ‘thousand words’ to the picture my friend. Like King Ahab we are living in a day in which it is more palatable to tolerate the lie than to unabashedly stand upon God’s unchanging word.

      I ran across this poem that was posted on Life.Org-

      “Innocent Voices”
      God’s wrath is stored up for the ones who with scorn,
      Consider as worthless the tiny preborn;
      For these little beings are precious to Him;
      He loves and He watches the growth of each limb.
      And each little fetus (imperfect ones, too)
      Is special to God, though he’s hidden from view.
      Someday at the judgment small voices will cry,
      Indicting their mothers who caused them to die,
      Accusing the doctors who ended their lives
      With suction and saline, with drugs and with knives.
      Like Abel whose blood cried to God against Cain,
      Their blood will expose those who caused them such pain.
      Then she who once shouted, “My body’s my own!”
      Will stand, mutely facing her sentence alone;
      No longer proclaiming her right to free choice,
      But haunted in hell by that innocent voice.

      The ultimate rebellion of humanity against God. ‘Killing babies made in the image of God’. A society that has believed the lie… that we have the right to choose, thereby making ourselves God in the vain thoughts and imaginations of our own minds

      I would rather admonish with the words of Abraham Lincoln: “No one has the right to do what is wrong.”

      mourning, weeping and repentance before standing before our Lord… we can only hope and pray my brother!


  3. ‘The ultimate rebellion of humanity against God. ‘Killing babies made in the image of God’.

    Dear Malachi.

    The image of God is impossible to see,
    Even with the tools of Science and Modern Biology.
    For it is not made of flesh and blood,
    This image we say is the image, Of God.

    The image of God is the spirit within,
    The conscience, the moral sense, intuition.
    It’s not the antithesis reason, but the hiigher reason,
    The flash of insight into the real thing-in-itself.

    Yet still some teach that we are born in original sin, that our spirit from the start is dead, or not present within; that our breath is all we have, that my friend is why Science and Reliigion are both so very bad.

    Jesus taught…..
    Suffer the little ones to come unto me,
    For such is the Kingdom of God.


  4. Brother Malachi, that was a somber message of truth as sadly even now, our country is more protective of the environment than of innocent unborn babies. Who was it that penned the fatal words “right to choose”? At the moment of conception, that embryo has all the dna that the child will ever have. The eye color, hair color and sex of the child among other things have already been determined. That unformed child is already known by Almighty God! But sadly for some insane reason, our high court has deemed that it is not a living thing, it is not a child. Because this baby cannot yet utter a sound in his or her own defense, it has been deemed legal to suction it out of the womb like yesterday’s trash.

    The same Satan who convinced one third of heaven’s angels that there was something better than God now has blinded souls convinced that abortion is their right!
    And as darkness and hell was the consequence for the fallen angels, so too will it be for those who persist in their “right” to do wrong!

  5. It’s good to educate people, for many people just drink in whatever is on tele-VISION, or com-PUTER, or Medi-PROPOGANDA…believers and unbelievers alike. No matter how it hurts we cannot retaliate wiith the arm of the flesh… …we need to be strong and educate and pray that they will come to their senses and change their minds and receive the King of hearrts. Vengeance is MINE saith the LORD! I will use the weapons of the Spirit to fight this evil and not with the arm of the fllesh. Amen ?

  6. […] ‘the hand of hope’ October 2009 7 comments 3 […]

  7. Everyone should consider the reality of these little lives.

    • Yes Sonya, thanks for stopping by a ‘A Word From Malalchi’. The attack of the fruit of the womb is not going unnoticed. The Psalmist (Psalm 127:3) says that children are an heritage to the Lord; and the fruit of the womb is HIS reward.

      He has considered every single one of them, even though the hard heart of our nation’s sin has not.

      Thanks for reading and having the convicitioin to comment.

      God Bless my friend

  8. A smile and a greeting to you from Hungary: Susan

    • The same to you Susan. Thanks for stopping by a word from malachi. Please take the time to read other articles and comment. Pray for the innocent in the womb!

      brother malachi

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