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Our amazing, God-given bodies

Rising above our limitations

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As I am waiting to get my knee replacement surgery scheduled, I keep thinking about the warning my surgeon has given me more than once.

He cautions me that since my replacement will be manmade, I shouldn’t expect it to be as good as the original knee. After all, it will be made of metal and plastic — sort of scary in a way, but I don’t have much choice, since my “factory-given” knee is shot.

A former roommate of mine was a medical student at Duke. She was not a religious person, but she confided in me that the more she learned about the human body, the more impressed she was about the wonders of it. We humans have tried to duplicate parts of the body other than knees, such as artificial hearts, but none of them measure up to what God has designed. Our bodies are very complicated, and every part has to work just so for us to stay healthy.

Can you imagine trying to coordinate all the functions of various organs? What if we had to keep reminding our lungs to breathe or our heart to beat? We’d be history in a few minutes. But God has designed parts of the brain to tell the organs what to do and when.

If an organ stops working, then we must take all sorts of medications as replacements for what the organ did. Some of us take thyroid medicine and insulin, for example. Sometimes these substances come from animals, such as pigs. And sometimes they’re manmade. But the manmade ones can produce side effects, so they’re not as good as the real thing.

Consider what the Bible says about our bodies: “For You (God) formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works…My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret, And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth” (Psalm 139:13-15).

Thank God for our amazing bodies!

We all have limitations. Being short is my most obvious one. I never reached 5 feet tall — and I’m shrinking over the years.

As a result, I had to give up a career as a professional basketball player. And I must use stepstools, ladders or taller people to reach items on high shelves or get where I need to go. Those ways I can overcome my difficulty.

Luke 19:1-9 tells us about a short guy named Zacchaeus. Here’s his story: “Then Jesus entered and passed through Jericho. Now behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus who was a chief tax collector, and he was rich. And he sought to see who Jesus was, but he could not because of the crowd, for he was of short stature. So he ran ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see Him…And when Jesus came to that place, He looked up and saw him, and said to him, ‘Zacchaeus, make haste and come down, for today I must stay at your house.’”

As a result, Zacchaeus was saved! And all because he was willing to overcome his limitation.

What might hold us back from being saved or from doing what Jesus wants us to do? I had trouble accepting Christ because when I had trusted important people in my childhood, I had been abused. I had to overcome this fear of abuse to finally be willing to give my heart to God.

Do we have some limitations from our childhoods? Are we worried about what other church people might think if we finally publicly accept Jesus? Are we worried what people will think if we get serious about our Christianity?

Just think of the possibilities: “Well, I thought she was a Christian already…Who does she think she is? Does she think she’s better than we are? Now she’ll thump her Bible and beat us over the head with it. Now she’ll be no fun at all!”

What other limitations might we have? Let’s rise about them, whatever they are!

Donna Crowe is a minister’s wife. Her devotional column could not be printed last week due to space limitations, so last week’s installment appears here beneath this week’s column.

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