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'Finger-Hold' Prayers to Manage Emotions

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rachel hextall

Finger-hold prayers to manage emotions

Emotions and feelings are like waves of energy moving through the body and mind. A channel of energy related to an emotion runs through each finger. With strong or overwhelming feelings, energy can become blocked or repressed, resulting in pain or congestion in the body. Holding each finger while breathing deeply can bring emotional and physical release, healing and peace.

The Technique:

Gently wrap your opposite hand around each finger in turn. Breathe in and out slowly; as you breath in become aware of any strong feelings or emotions you are holding inside yourself. As you breathe out, let these feelings go, imagine them draining out of your finger into the earth. Breathe in a sense of harmony, strength and healing – perhaps using a verse or two of scripture to ground yourself in the love and compassion of God. A number of scripture verses are suggested for each finger/emotion. Please be led by the Spirit, use whichever resonates with you and of course add to the suggested list!

As you hold each finger in turn you might feel different sensations – a pulsing, heat or coldness; continue the gentle in and out breathe as the sensations become more balanced. It might be helpful to do these finger holds before going to sleep to help release the tension of the day and bring peace.

THUMB: tears, grief, sadness, emotional pain.

  • Nothing can separate us from the love of God. Rom 8:39
  • He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away. Rev 21:4
  • Come to me all you who are weary and heavy burdened and I will give you rest. Matt 11:28

INDEX FINGER: Fear, panic, terror.

  • Do not be afraid, for I have redeemed you, I have called you by your name, you are mine Is 43:1b
  • God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, love and self discipline. 2Tim 1:7
  • The Lord watches over you – the Lord is your shade at your right hand: the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night. Ps 121:5-6
  • My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. 2Cor 12:9
  • Keep me safe O God, for in you I take refuge Ps 16:1
  • Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not let them be afraid. Jn 14:27

MIDDLE FINGER: anger, rage, resentment

  • Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning. Lam 3:22-23
  • In your anger do not sin; do not let the sun go down while you are still angry. Eph 4:26
  • Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because your reward is in heaven. Matt 5:11-12a

RING FINGER: worry, anxiety, preoccupation

  • Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Is 40:31
  • Cast all your cares on the Lord, for he will sustain you. Ps 55:22a
  • The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms. Deut 33:27a
  • The Lord will not let your foot slip – he who watches over you will not slumber Ps 121:3

LITTLE FINGER: lack of self esteem, victimhood.

  • I have loved you with an everlasting love. Jer 31:3b
  • Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord for ever. Ps 23:6
  • O Lord, you search me and you know me. Ps 139:1
  • You discern my going out and lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Ps 139:3
  • For you created my inmost being, you knitted me together in my mother's womb. Ps 139:13
  • I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Ps 139:14a
  • My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. Ps 139:15a
  • When I was woven together in the depth of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body Ps 139:15b-16a
  • All the days ordained to me were written in your book before one of them came to be Ps 139:16b
  • how precious to me are you thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them. Ps 139:17

Finally, PLACE THE FINGER TIPS OF BOTH HANDS TOGETHER – peace, harmony, well being
Spend a few relaxing in the peace and love of God. Thanking him for showing his love for us in the death and resurrection of his Son Jesus. Trusting him for all that is to come.

Please note: Scripture passages may vary slightly in your translation
You can find online Bible passages (various translations) at Bible Gateway

Index of abbreviations:

Abbreviation Book of the Bible Old or New Testament
2 Cor 2nd Letter to the Corinthians New
Deut Deuteronomy Old
Eph Letter to the Ephesians New
Is Isaiah Old
Jer Jeremiah Old
Jn Gospel according to John New
Lam Lamentations Old
Matt Gospel according to Matthew New
Ps Psalms Old
Rev Revelations New
Rom Letter to the Romans New
2 Tim 2nd Letter to Timothy New

Instead of using Scripture passages you might prefer some lines from a hymn or short chant – they can also be used at the beginning – all from Singing the Faith (StF).

StF 624 – David Adam
Calm Me Lord, as you calmed the storm;

StF 648 – John L Bell
God to enfold you,

StF 780 – Taizé Community
Stay with me,

StF 776 – Taizé Community
In the Lord I'll be ever thankful,

Capacitar International
These Finger holds have been developed by Dr Pat Cane as part of an international network of empowerment and solidarity. Capacitar International are especially committed to communities affected by violence, poverty and trauma. Capacitar's mission is to heal ourselves and heal our world by teaching simple holistic wellness practices that help people tap into the wisdom of their own body, mind and spirit. This leads to healing, wholeness and peace in the individual and in the world.

More information can be found at The website includes a free to download Emergency Tool Kit with several more exercises to help release trauma. Pat Cane can be seen on YouTube demonstrating the basic finger holds. If the link doesn't work then search for "Capacitar International – Fingerholds to manage emotions" or Tiny Little Hannah. There are other Capacitar healing practices available.

Reverend Rachel Hextall, Minister in Spirituality and Holistic Health: 04/2020

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