During a household move, several years ago now, I was on one end of a bulky piece of furniture, backing into our kitchen from our garage. The fellow on the other end will go unnamed to protect his identity, but for the purposes of this article, we'll call him Pat Stevens ----of Mt. Airy, Maryland. Before lifting his end, Pat had paused just long enough to put on a pair of heavy leather work gloves. As I was backing up, bare-knuckled, he was explaining that he had torn up his hands so often helping people move that he had adopted the gloved-hand practice. “That may be necessary for a young buck such as yourself,” I thought, “but I was an experienced mover when you were lip-synching to your first Milli Vanilli album. My cat-like reflexes were finely honed before you swallowed your first strained pea.”
Distracted by the thought, “I wonder if it was Mr. Gerber or Mr. Beech-nut who first made that ill-advised decision to strain peas?,” I receded through the doorway, somehow catching my left pinky on the latch as I went by. In the kitchen, I saw the tell-tale sign that I was bleeding--- blood proceeding from my skin. To make matters worse, it was coming from my little finger, which has always depended on me, and to which I've grown quite attached over the years. Perhaps you've already noted the irony of the situation. Seconds after Pat put on his heavy work gloves, explaining that he did so to protect his hands, I was leaving a substantial portion of one of my favorite fingers at my kitchen door.
The irony wasn't lost on me either, but at that moment I was thinking less about lost irony and more about my rapid loss of iron. On most occasions, the loss of a little blood doesn't bother me, but this was my blood. My blood is valuable, by the way, not just because it's mine, but because it has been officially designated 0-positive, which makes it the universal donor blood. The blood ladies tell me that I'm the repository of a valuable commodity. I can give blood to almost anyone. I'm a walking blood-mobile---a national treasure. Any day I expect to be spirited off to a secret federal facility in a desert somewhere to be poked and prodded and never heard from again, although my wife has pretty much given up hope it will ever happen.
Now, if anyone should actually read this far, he would no doubt be saying to himself, “Where is he going with this?” Trust me. I had something in mind when I took laptop in lap, and it wasn't just, “Was Milli Vanilli one guy, like Rimsky-Korsakov?” You may be thinking, “Perhaps he's going to contrast the wise man, Pat, who foresaw the danger and prepared himself, with the foolish man, Russ, who did not prepare himself, and suffered the consequences.” That'll be the day!
Getting back to the traumatic events of that morning: After Pat and I carefully placed the furniture in the first of many wrong spots, I proceeded to the bathroom to bandage my wound and, in the interest of all mankind, to attempt to retard the flow of My Precious. It was later in the day, after the moving elves had returned to the forest, that I first took a close look at what was left of my finger. I hoped I had just cut it, but I discovered to my chagrin that a chunk of my flesh was missing. This was a deep chunk, epidermis, dermis, endodermis, you name it. I checked the door latch to see if it was still thee, but it was gone. I can only assume that a government agent took it in an attempt to clone me without my knowledge or permission. The ounce of flesh had come out of the front of my finger, directly opposite my knuckle. If your pinky is like mine, it has wrinkles there, presumably as an aid to finger bending----wrinkles which would make it particularly difficult to heal.
Now here's the interesting part (thought we'd never get there, didn't you?). The skin was gone, but somehow, my finger stopped bleeding. Not only that, but over the next few weeks, it healed from the inside out, despite the fact that I kept using it (my disability claim having been rejected), doing whatever it is that pastors do. I watched in amazement as the indentation became less and less pronounced, to the point that before long it was impossible to tell which of pinkies was nearly severed. The body's healing power is a minor wonder that we all take for granted, but it is a wonder. David said in Psalm 139,“I will praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made...” (my wife and I exemplify this verse; she was wonderfully made, and I was fearfully made). I am always amazed when I contemplate that biologists estimate the capillaries within a person, if laid end to end, would circle the globe (they would know this for sure if they could just find that one elusive volunteer).
But the marvel of the human body is only one of countless wonders all around us. David goes on to say “Marvelous are your works, and that my soul knows very well.” I heard a news item about the recent discovery that a particular plant has flowers that spring open in a few milliseconds. It is too fast for the average human eye to see. The event was filmed with a special high speed camera, and it appears that the quick burst is triggered by an insect touching a tiny filament near the flower. The affect is to pulverize the unsuspecting bee with the plant's pollen. Of course the reason this process was unknown for so long is that only someone with cat-like reflexes would ever notice such a thing, and we are few and far between (although there is reason to believe that some of us are being duplicated). “Oh that men would praise the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men!” [Psalm 107:8]
From a collection of: Wry Bread Articles by Pastor Russ Sukhia ________________________________________________________________
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