Have you ever thought about how incredibly fragile the physical human body is?
I mean think about how many factors must be absolutely perfect for life to begin in the first place.
The man’s health must be on track.
The woman’s health must be on track.
The environment within the womb must be right.
The timing must be right.
Once all these factors are just so and the egg and sperm are able to meet, there is a celebration! Really! Science has actually confirmed that when an egg and sperm meet, there is a flash of light. Could this perhaps be the moment a person receives their own spirit from God? The moment when God and all the angels rejoice at the creation of a new living soul?
Now, most of us probably take these factors of conception for granted but ask any couple who has ever had trouble conceiving and they will tell you how much of a miracle this first step is.
I have evidence of this miracle within my own marriage. Due to my husband’s health and the medication he is required to take, John had been told, by various doctors, that it was very unlikely that he would ever be able to have children.
Our three girls on earth and two babies in heaven are a miracle.
Now take the life process beyond conception. The formation of a new human is a very delicate process. Every step forward must be absolutely perfect.
The fertilized egg must successfully plant itself in the womb. How many miscarriages or pregnancy complications result because this condition was not met?
The sperm and the egg must connect in just the right way with the correct number of chromosomes. Chromosomal abnormalities can cause a miscarriage, disease or stunted growth in the baby, Downs Syndrome… Think about the miracle of Down Syndrome babies (and those with other kinds of genetic disorders) making it to birth!
The cells must form and develop in just the right way throughout the entire pregnancy. How great is it that modern medicine is now able to detect, and many times address, any complications that occur during this process? How amazing is it that doctors are actually able to perform surgeries on babies while they are still in the womb!
Birth itself is a very fragile process. For natural birth to occur:
The baby must be in the perfect position.
The woman’s body must operate in just the right way.
My babies were not in the perfect position and my body did not operate in this way. I’m so incredibly thankful that God has given doctors the knowledge and ability to perform c-sections!
The fragility of life continues beyond the womb. There is a reason many parents, myself included, worry so much more during the first year of our new child’s life. So many things can go wrong. What a miracle it is that so many things go right!
God made the physical human body incredibly fragile. We don’t have hard shells to hide within like turtles do. We don’t have sharp teeth and long claws with which to defend ourselves. We don’t have a thick outer skin. We are easily and deeply affected by viruses and various types of diseases.
And yet, with all this fragility, God gave human beings a place of prominence among his creation. He created this weak physical form and called it good.
II Corinthians 12:9 (ESV) says,
- And he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
Few things in life make you feel quite as weak and helpless as when you are handed a newborn baby for the first time and charged with its care. And think about that newborn itself – it isn’t exactly what we would consider to be a pinnacle of strength. And think about the baby who is still developing within the womb – the height of weakness and vulnerability and yet, according to scripture, the most perfect display of God’s strength.
At times it seems incomprehensible to think that God could love such fragile creatures as humankind. And yet, anyone who has ever touched or held a newborn baby for the first time can begin to comprehend it. The baby is a small, bawling bundle of helplessness. She has done absolutely nothing to earn your affection (in fact, for the woman, this little baby has done nothing but siphon off nutrients and energy from your own body).
And yet, the moment you see her, smell her, touch her, your heart is filled with such incredible joy. You’ve known of her existence. You have felt her within you. She has been a part of you for nine long months. You have already connected to her spirit. And yet to actually see her, hold her, touch her – such love and joy is impossible to express.
How much more does God feel that way about us – from the moment life enters our tiny cells, he considers us precious. He displays his strength and power in us at every moment of our development. And when we cry and thrash our limbs about in utter helplessness, he holds us even closer and loves us even deeper.
God created us with weak, fragile forms. And yet, he loves us and values us beyond measure. The apparent weakness of the physical body is, in fact, a place of great beauty and strength.
How great is our God and how priceless are the fragile, physical forms he gave us.
*Note about this blog: I sat down to write about how the spiritual and physical are connected and how they impact each other, but this came out instead. Sometimes that happens when I connect to God while I’m writing.