“Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.
Praise the Lord.”
Right now, as you read this, an intricately layered spheroid inside of you is executing harmoniously syncopated bursts to pump a hot salt solution, literally teeming with life, to the rest of your body. Did you ask it to do that?
If you are still reading, I bet that your chest cavity is spontaneously expanding and filling with a substance that you cannot see and did not ask for. On a sub-microscopic level, an outrageously complex cipher is flawlessly making exact copies of itself based on a billion-part algorithmic recipe whose ingredients you cannot name, that it learned verbatim from your great-great-great-grandparents despite both your ignorance and theirs. Meanwhile, a three-pound sack of gelatin in something you call your “head” is erupting in a cacophony of precisely channeled electrical signals traveling thousands of miles per hour, and a series of photons traveling hundreds of times yet faster are bouncing off your retinas and sending millions more electrical impulses careening down neural pathways into the gelatinous mass. The vast majority of these are then instantaneously filtered, with a tiny proportion translated as “images” and a select few interpreted as “letters,” collected in groups called “words” and attached seamlessly to corresponding “meanings.” You (probably) have absolutely no clue how any of this actually happens, and could not stop a single symphonic minutia of it even if you wanted to. It happens to you.
This is the most astonishing part: there is something inside that thing you call “body” which is utterly and inexplicably different: that thing you call “me.” I wager that until about thirty seconds ago, you did not even notice how magnificently preposterous this is.
Did you praise your Creator for this today? Me neither. In light of this, I submit that all of your problems and mine are gratitude deficiencies.
For, we both fluently speak and read the English language, which automatically places us in the most opportunity-rich people group of all time. We both live in a time and place that among our species is far better than we could ever have hoped for. Last night we both found ourselves in a warm, safe place to sleep and today we will consume nourishing food and sanitary water that we did not produce, find, collect, clean, transport, prepare, deliver, or—in any meaningful sense—earn.
Above all, there are two great facts: this astonishing universe has an omnipotent Author, and that Author has died for you, personally, in particular. Consider that it did not have to be this way. He did not have to create you or me, our minds, bodies or world. He did not have to become fragile and vulnerable. He did not have to suffer. He did not have to die. And He did not have to tell you about it.
I sometimes start to think that I have problems, worries, things to do, choices to make, fleeting dreams to chase. But this is precisely and only because I forget at least two miracles every day: I am, in Christ.