Just look at you! You have one amazing body. You have 200 bones, 600 muscles, millions of glands, billions of nerves, trillions of cells, and a whole lot more. They all work together perfectly—automatically! Surely someone greater than you put you together.
King David understood that when he said “How you made me is amazing and wonderful. I praise you for that” (Psalm 139:14, NIV Kid’s Devotional Bible). To that we can say “Amen!”
You know that God made your body wonderful, but how often do you take time to think about that? How often do you thank God for your toes or your tongue or your two arms?
Let’s do that right now. We’ll take some time to look at a few of these neglected parts, and then thank God for your body.
But first, get a hand mirror. You’ll need it.
To watch your eyes work, make sure you are in a well-lit room. Take the mirror and put it close enough to your face so that you can see the pupils (those black holes) in your eyes. Then close your eyes tightly for a full minute—count slowly to 60. Open them and immediately check your pupils in the mirror. You should be able to see them shrink from big black holes to pin pricks. Your eyes automatically adjust to light.
That colored part around each pupil, the iris, does the adjusting. It’s got three different layers of cells and lots of muscles. It’s also got all the cells that give your eyes color.
The combination of color cells and tissues in your irises is yours alone. No one else has irises that look or work exactly like yours. They’re absolutely unique.
Thank God for your eyes. They’re beautiful, they’re complicated, and no one else has eyes just like yours.
Try to walk around the room without bending your toes or ankles. Now try to run that way. Awkward, isn’t it? You need to bend your toes and ankle to walk well.
That’s why you’ve been given so many joints and other things in your feet. One-quarter of all the bones in your body are in your feet—26 bones in each foot. Each foot also has 33 joints and more than 100 muscles. All those muscles and bones are knit together with lots of tendons and ligaments. And they’re all put together exactly right so that you can walk and run and hop and skip and jump. Your feet are mechanical works of art!
Now take off your shoes and socks. Watching your feet, walk slowly around the room. See how your toes bend and spread? Stand on tiptoes and watch your ankles work.
Thank God for your wonderful feet.
Take a good look at your tongue. See those tiny bumps? They’re not really taste buds. Each of those bumps covers many taste buds. You were born with about 10,000 taste buds on your tongue. Ten thousand! You lose some over the years. Older people usually have around 5,000. That’s still a lot of taste buds.
Can you curl your tongue when you stick it out? Not everyone can do that. No one knows why. But that doesn’t matter. Your tongue can do all the things that need to be done.
Your tongue moves food around in your mouth, pushes it to the back of your throat, and helps you swallow. Without your tongue, you’d have to eat mostly liquid food.
To prove that, grab some raisins and try to eat them without using your tongue. You can’t do it, can you?
But there’s more to your tongue than helping you eat. Your tongue, of course, also enables you to talk. Try to say “This is my tongue” without moving your tongue. It’s impossible! Now say, “Thank you, God, for my amazing, tough tongue.”
Just for fun, try tackling these tricky tongue twisters:
- Twelve twins twirled twelve twigs.
- Sam’s shop sells spotted socks.
- Now you make one up!
To find out just how handy your thumbs are, tape both of your thumbs down so that you can’t use them. Try to keep them taped down for a day.
We have what are called opposable thumbs. “Opposable” comes from the word opposite. We can put our thumbs opposite our fingers. We can grab. That’s a very big deal, as you’ll discover when you tape your thumbs. What things were hard—or impossible—to do without opposable thumbs?
Thank God for your opposable thumbs.
1. You have approximately 250,000 sweat glands in your feet. That’s why your feet sweat a lot. And it might explain those stinky tennis shoes!
2. Your tongue pushes saliva to the back of your mouth. Without muscles in your tongue, you probably would drool all the time.
3. Your eyes send upside-down pictures to your brain. Your brain flips the picture.
4. The middle part of your ear is no bigger than an M&M. Three bones that are in your middle ear could fit on top of a penny.
Some of you use cool tools and technology or other means to help you see, hear, speak, or move. Here are just a few:
- Kids with visual impairments might need special tools or a special friend to help them get around. Maybe you wear eyeglasses or contact lenses to see better. Or use a cane to walk around safely. You might even have a service animal to help you move around independently—a dog, a miniature horse, or even a pig who wears a special harness and is trained to be your helper.
- Hearing aids or cochlear implants help some kids hear better. Some know what other people are saying just by watching their lips move. Some use sign language to talk to other people with their hands. Do you know any sign language? Have you ever learned the signs for “Jesus Love Me?” If not, ask someone to teach you the signs!
- Some kids use special technology to help them talk. You may use a special communication device, an iPad, or a laptop to talk to family, friends, and teachers. You may use pictures or symbols to ask for something, answer a question, or to say hi.
- Some kids use wheelchairs, walkers, or power chairs to get around. Some wheelchairs are also standers, which means you can stand up right with your chair!
However you see, hear, speak, or move, you are made in the image of God. Thank God for the wonderful tools and technology that help you each day.