A few years ago I was helping a friend to move. She needed help moving furniture straight up one flight of stairs. I was close to 400 pounds and it was summer time. That made it feel like 100 degrees plus. I was being SHERA – picking up things in the wrong way by using my back and not my knees and center. When I was done, I was WHOOPED. I went home and fell asleep on my stomach on the floor. When I woke up and moved one inch my entire body seized in acute AGONY. I had never felt this kind of pain before and I never want to EVER again! I was stuck. I had to lie there for several hours until my family came home and it took 2 of the men in my family to get me off the floor. I couldn’t even walk on my own. The next day I went to a chiropractor. He graciously accepted an appointment for me. After that man twisted my body in ways I didn’t even know it could be twisted (it was kind of embarrassing), then he JUMPED on top of me. His body literally bounced off of mine. My back sounded like my Great Grandma Lola when she ate gristle. Scared me more than anything, but when he got off of me, I could walk on my own. He told me to drink plenty of water and to lay on my side with a pillow between my knees (I still sleep this way). When I woke up the next morning, I went on a road trip where I drove for 4 hours. I was thankful for my spine.
I started thinking about the importance of the spine and its job. It has such an intricately detailed responsibility. No computer can compute at the speed or capacity of input nor output of information that the spine is capable of accomplishing. There are over 100 million receptors in the body. There MUST be a system within the system that decides what is most important. For example, how does the body know that the heart is more important than the finger? For the spine, it’s the reticular activating system (RAS). This is bundle of nerves located at the base of the skull and at the top of the spinal cord. It is specifically responsible for connecting the actual spinal cord, cerebrum and cerebellum; and mediating the overall level of consciousness. With the use of 100 million receptors, it is the way that your body responds to outside and inside stimulus be it something that makes you smile or wince in pain. Just to understand the overwhelming amount of information that this extremely small bundle of complicated nerves is capable of, let’s view a small list.
(Reticular Activating System – RAS)
· Spinal cord: A cylindrical bundle of nerve fibers and associated tissue that connects nearly all parts of the body to the brain. This makes up the central nervous system. (feels all pain and pleasure and everything in between)
· Cerebrum: Integrates the complex sensory and neural functions. It initiates and coordinates the voluntary/intentional activity in the body. (coordinates all movement)
· Cerebellum: coordinates and regulates all of the muscles in the entire body. (organizes the muscle’s responsibility in movement)
· RAS: Mediates the overall level of consciousness. (for example, you begin to see your new car everywhere)
That’s A LOT – TOO MUCH to have to think about! Sometimes life can be like that. So many things to respond to! And if you are a multi-tasker, it’s all multiplied. However, if you belong to the Kingdom of God, the Creator has given you a mechanism to help to know what you should do when. Because everything that is urgent is NOT important. But everything that is important is NOT urgent either. Then there are times when situations become both urgent and important. Don’t have one of those situations when you are exhausted…(smh) Whew! Here’s a truth that you should memorize. Just like the RAS, you are not in control over what happens to you. However, you are in COMPLETE control over how you respond. People who don’t acknowledge this lose their fricken minds. However, if you deploy the 6th sense over your ability to touch or be touched, you have a chance to keep the sanctity of your sanity. (#getcaughtup)
You may wanna develop a life of prayer. Overlaying prayer over your ability to respond to outside receptors is the perfect way to guide your conscious to decide how you should respond to any given situation in life. Without a lifestyle of prayer, you are doomed to possibly react to situations with urgency when it isn’t necessary. Or, it can cause you to procrastinate on something that requires immediate action. Prayer can be the difference between the perfect opportunity and a delayed dream. It gives us a God’s-eye view by heightening our awareness and gives us a hint regarding spiritual realities that guide every natural situation (Thx Mark Batterson). Therefore, if you feel like your life is on overload and your existence seems off kilt, check the level and intimacy of your prayer life. I betcha you will find your center.
A couple of years ago I went on a Mediterranean cruise. It set sail in Rome. So, we got a chance to visit the Vatican. It was a dream come true to be able to see the Sistine Chapel ceiling. It was so far away and a lot smaller than I imagined, but I was able to clearly see the brilliance of Michelangelo’s “Creation.” In particular, I believe the specific detail of the space between God’s finger and Adam’s was a strategic detail to paint. Why didn’t he draw their hands touching? Great idea Mickey! The chasm of space between God’s finger and Adam’s embodies the complete quest of life. The most fulfilled life goes to the person who spends the most energy closing the gap between your decisions and God’s dream for you.
I’m Tifiny and iambutNaked…