by Cora Alles
I can feel the familiar tingle in my throat and occasional chills through my arms and legs, the signs of my body fighting an oncoming sickness. I have a smaller appetite than normal and less energy. My mind does not focus as sharply, and my body feels weaker and more fragile. It is nothing serious, but an annoyance all the same. Throughout the day today, I was tempted to complain about this and let everyone know how frustrating it is to deal with these symptoms. Yet my mind also wandered to this unexpected thought: How amazing it is that our human bodies function at all!
If I remember anything from science classes, it is that humans are incredibly complex. We have eleven major organ systems that jointly function, allowing us to breathe, move, feel, reproduce, and fight disease. Our noses can detect around 1 trillion different smells. If all the blood vessels in a human body were laid end to end, they would encircle the Earth four times. An average adult is made up of 7 octillion atoms and 100 trillion cells. And all of this came from a single egg, which is just one cell, typically 0.2 mm across.
Personally, I cannot think about the human body without seeing the hand prints of God. How could all of our physical complexities – let alone the incredible capacity of our brains and the convoluted layers of our emotions – have somehow originated from nothing?
In Genesis 1:27, it is written:
“So God created mankind in His own image, in the image of God He created them; male and female He created them.”
God created us, in His own image! This truth always gives me a sense of awe and humility. Our Creator chooses to use His inexpiable and unimaginable power to form each of our 206 bones, 650 muscles, 100 billion brain nerve cells, and individual personalities. The normal, everyday functioning of my body should remind me of His existence.
In Psalm 139:14, David extols God for this:
“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”
I was not expecting to respond to my minor sickness by praising God, but it gave me a good perspective. Instead of dwelling on my slight discomfort, I can focus on the goodness and majesty of my Creator. I am so thankful that He created me, and that normally my body functions as it should. The human being testifies to the existence of a good, powerful, real God. May my response to physical discomfort always be that of worship and not grumbling.