You are amazing. Just look at you.
- You have 18 square feet (1.6 square meters) of skin holding in 6 quarts (5.7 liters) of blood.
- Your blood travels through 60,000 miles (96,000 kilometers) of blood vessels.
- You have about 6 feet (almost 2 meters) of tubing, 200 bones, 600 muscles, thousands of hairs, millions of glands, billions of nerves, trillions of cells, and much, much more.
During the next minute your heart will beat about 70 times, and you will breathe about 15 times. Your lungs will pick up oxygen and discard carbon dioxide. Your intestines will pick and choose food from your latest meal.
White blood cells will patrol your body for germs. Microscopic cells will pump in minerals and pump out waste. Your bones will make 100 million red blood cells. And your brain will process millions of electrical signals. All of this and much, much more will happen automatically.
Of course, the real you is much more than your body. But on these two pages we’ll look at your body only. It’s amazing.
King David had it right when he wrote, “I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” Read Psalm 139:13-16, then say,
What a Joint
Try this: Stand up and walk without bending your toes, ankles, or knees. Now run without bending those joints. What would you do without just the right joints?
Feel the top of your head. Several bones come together in a solid joint up there. Those bones protect your brain; they shouldn’t move. That’s why we call it a solid joint.
Put your fingers in front of your ears where your jaw is hinged, then open and close your mouth. You can feel that hinge joint working. It lets your jaw go up and down. If you had a solid joint there—like the one on top of your head—you wouldn’t be able to eat.
Hold your arms straight out. Move them in circles. Flap them up and down. Your shoulders are ball-in-socket joints that allow movement in all directions. What could you do if your shoulders were hinge joints? What couldn’t you do?
One more example: pick up something—anything—without bending your fingers.
You get the idea. Every joint in your body is made just right for what it has to do. You are wonderfully made.
Your Amazing Birthday Suit
Pinch the skin on top of a knuckle. See that extra skin? It’s there so you can bend your finger.
Feel the palm of your hand, then feel an eyelid. Feel the difference? The skin in your palm is 10 times thicker than that on your eyelid. Your hands reach out to touch the world; your eyelids don’t.
Your skin always fits you, mends itself when torn, keeps your insides in, and helps control your temperature. Thank God for your amazing birthday suit. Then thank God for your whole amazing body.
Eye See You
Find a mirror that you can look into while you have your hand on a light switch. (This usually works well in a bathroom.) Move close enough to the mirror so you can see the pupils of your eyes (the black part). Close your eyes, turn off the light, and wait a few seconds. Then turn on the light as you open your eyes and watch them in the mirror. You should see your pupils shrink. Your eyes automatically adjust to light and darkness.
In front of your pupils you have lenses, sort of like lenses in a pair of glasses. But your lenses are made up of 2,200 tiny layers of living tissue that can stretch and bend to focus. That’s why you can read these words one minute and focus on a cloud the next. Your eyes automatically adjust.
The cells that change light to sight in each eye are called rods and cones. You have about 126,000 of these in each eyeball, packed into an area smaller than a postage stamp. Rods help you see at night; cones help you see color.
There’s much more to eyes than what you just read. People study them for a lifetime and still don’t understand them. Only the Creator does. Yet your eyes work automatically and usually quite perfectly throughout your life.
What a wonder!
Try this: Keep your eyes open wide as long as you can without blinking. Eventually you’ll blink because your eyes need water.
Have someone help you tape your thumbs to the palms of your hands. Keep your thumbs taped for an hour.
That’s a small exercise to appreciate little things about your body. We don’t think of our thumbs often, yet they are very important. They’re just one more example of God’s attention to detail.
Think About It
- Read Genesis 1:27. What is the image of God?
- Read 1 Corinthians 6:19-20. How is your body a temple? How can you honor God with your body?
About the Author
Joanne De Jonge is a freelance writer and a former U.S. National Park Ranger. She attends West Valley Christian Fellowship in Phoenix, Ariz.