We snuggled up on the sofa, turned on the TV and together as a family watched last nights Ariana Grande One Love concert in Manchester.

We found it deeply moving, not least because of the terror attacks in London the previous night and it was less than two weeks after the terror attack in Manchester following her gig in the city.

There were some beautiful ‘Kingdom of heaven’ poured out moments. I found Justin Bieber’s emotional speech deeply moving as well as the Black Eye Peas rendition of their old classic ‘Where is the love.’ In case you didn’t see Bieber’s prayer, here it is:

“God is good in the midst of the darkness, God is good in the midst of the evil, God is in the midst no matter what is happening in the world. God is in the midst and he loves you and he’s here for you. I just want to honour the people who were taken - we love you so much. Put both hands up to honour those people right now. Everybody say ‘we honour you and we love you’."

A few weeks ago I painted some hands on the streets of Cambridge. In hindsight it now feels like it was a prophetic painting for the nation. (At the time I didn’t have a clue what I was doing.)

The response from the crowds holding heart-shaped hands throughout last nights concert inspired me to write a poem while out on a prayer walk today. Well I say poem, it’s more of a splurge and a cry out to God in the midst of all the pain and anguish I am feeling as I pray for this messed up world. But anyway, here it is:


Heart shaped hands.

Heart shaped hands held on high

In defiant protest against the hurt spurned hatred

That rips apart young lives

We’ve asked ‘will Your Kingdom come’ now, right here, as it is there in heavenly perfection,

May your intention be drawn nearer, would you be the bearer and carer of this fallen earth?


Heart shaped hands held on high

In defiant protest against fear, ‘love wins’ we cry

Pop stars in tears dare proclaim God is in our midst despite the heart ache and pain: that He is good

I’m a Belieber when I hear this. When God’s goodness is proclaimed from a stage that is erected by the results of explosions, stabbings and a white van driven to kill indiscriminately

I too cry for the God of love to pour out, double measure, his goodness where badness breeds.


Heart shaped hands held on high

In defiant protest against revenge, pleading that arms deals cease

That trolley loads of firearms don’t make the check-out and drones and bombs don’t fall upon the children of distant lands who hide in fear in cellars, hospitals or schools

May our hands always be heart shaped not weapon shaped or tight and fisted

May they ooze hope and drip with the promise that there is One returning soon to make all things new

Lift up your heart shaped hands, in defiant protest, lift them up and dare to proclaim: ‘Thy Kingdom come.’

10 thoughts on “Justin Bieber and heart shaped hands…

  1. Chris, that is so powerful and heartfelt. Really sums up what most of us are feeling – Thank you! And love the website!

  2. Absolutely love this ,it made me cry when Justin Beiber prayed ,I saw him in Jerusalem at the temple on the mount church .he had his big body guards with him,but he appeared lost in prayer 🙏.love the poem too Chris x

  3. I am still processing all of this. What was God saying to us on the day of Pentecost? Where is the Spirit at work? We need to take this Beiber Guy seriously – who are our prophets in today’s world (apart of course from lovely Chris Duffet)

  4. I watched this and am so glad I found your post. I love the painting and the poem. Keep working on art and share it.

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