The words “Your Amazing Body” is on the cover of the latest issue of Reader’s Digest. Inside, one would find articles that highlight the wonder of the human body as well as advances in the field of health and medicine. One segment entitled “The Amazing Body Tour” presents some remarkable facts about the human body. For example, in one day:
- You didn’t overheat or freeze. Your inner thermostat, located at the hypothalamus, is an engineering marvel. A change of as little as one degree Fahrenheit triggers your body to make lifesaving adjustments. When your temperature gets too high, blood vessels in your skin dilate to release heat. When it drops, they constrict and your sweat glands shut down. Once your core hits 97 degrees, you can start shivering as a way to produce heat.
- You breathed 25,000 times—without trying. If you had to consciously choose to breathe that often, you’d never get anything done. Or be able to sleep. So thank your brain stem for making the habit of breathing automatic.
- You also blinked about 15 times a minute, almost 15,000 times while you were awake. You do this spontaneously to protect your eyes and clean away dirt.
Dr. Travis Stork, who wrote the article, comments: “the design of the human body continues to blow my mind.”
I could not help but remember another person who expressed a similar sense of wonder at the human body. “You created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well” (Psalm 139.13–14 NIV). Indeed, the human body is such an amazing piece of work. And King David did not hesitate to attribute the “design of the human body” to the creative work of God.
Scripture also picks up the wonderful design of the human body, with each part working for the benefit of the whole, as an instructive metaphor of how God’s people ought to function as the body of Christ in this world. The apostle Paul writes about the church “growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love” (Ephesians 4.15–16 NLT).
—Keith Y. Jainga