What is made with love is often well made and well loved. "Things men have made with wakened hands, and put soft life into are awake through years with transferred touch, and go on glowing for long years. And for this reason, some old things are lovely, warm still with the life of forgotten men who made them" D. H. Lawrence.
Interwoven with my love of All That IS and my gratitude for the multitudinous gifts of my life, is a love of beauty is a great admiration for and love of the human hand.
I can't remember whose hands these are - making the drum above - for many hands have come to my table and formed themselves into prayers. Young and old alike, finding their way to make magic, create a home for the indwelling spirit of a drum or a rattle. Making an altar to acknowledge those who's help we'd like, or those who we want to make sure know that they are loved and remembered.
Our mouths were surely made for singing, our feet for dancing and our hands; for holding, tending, stroking, planting, cooking, waving, carving, casting (rods or stitches), sanding, cutting, knotting, wrapping, weaving, spinning, banging, clapping, making, making, making, the magic that is the creating of beautiful and power-full objects. This is obviously not a definitive list!
"This is the real secret of life, to be completely engaged with what you are doing... and instead of calling it work... realise it is play" Alan Watts
Or if it doesn't feel like play, then make it prayer.
Art as prayer is one of the most beautiful and rewarding things I can think of to do. It can be anything, a mandala made of leaves, a castle of sand, a tapestry, a clay goddess, a cake, a song.
As long as it is made with love, offered with love.
So the prayer is much more in the gratitude and in the making, for all that you are and all that you love, than it is in the offering itself.
"May your joys, like the starts at night, be too numerous to count." (Pierre Pradervand) And may your hands find many beautiful things to make, all of them prayers.