Learning Anatomy

Amazing how we live in these bodies which are perfectly formed and serve us well for so many years, and can know relatively little about them. Only when there are injuries, or pain, do we learn more.

I had friends who had torn their rotator cuffs over the years, but still knew little about this complex aspect of our anatomy until I tore mine. Now I can rattle off the names of the tendons which make up that part of the anatomy and understand more of their function. Those tendons speak loudly whenever I make a wrong move.

The other day I was going down some stairs and missed the fact the landing had arrived and believed I had another step. You know that automatic adjustment that happens in an instant! I threw out my right hand to steady myself by grabbing the handrail. For about 10 minutes I had to stop and breathe through the intense pain which throbbed and screamed through me. Learning becomes more necessary when connected to pain!

I’ve shared here about doing PRP treatments, which is a means to allow the body to do the healing it knows how to do by injecting platelet rich plasma (PRP) into the injured areas. After two treatments, I felt I needed to get other help so that I didn’t develop frozen shoulder. My chiropractor gave me some simple movements, but she felt I might need physical therapy. We decided to give it a week to see how I progressed.

I’d been praying about this question of physical therapy, not even knowing where to start in a search nor what questions to ask, when I received an inquiry from a guy for mediation and felt this immediate connection with him over the phone. I found out he was a Physical Therapist and said, “I might need your help, too.” I was able to help him get the information he needed, and then emailed about my situation. His reply astounded me at the goodness of God:

“I have hands-on techniques that I do during a PRP regimen that set the tissue up for maximum success with PRP treatment. There are not a lot of PTs doing this sort of treatment in the Portland area because it is relatively new; it’s called fascial-counterstrain (if you want to google it). The treatment is simple and painless and the goal in your case would be to maximize healthy circulation in the areas where the PRP injections will be delivered. On top of that, there might be some simple gentle home stretches that I could recommend, but I would need to take a look at how your shoulder moves before I could tell you what stretches you should focus on.”

I nearly fell off my chair reading his words. The goodness of God to come alongside me in my need overwhelmed me. I had been praying long about this, but this felt like heaven reached down into my life, saying, “How about this?” I emailed right back. We set up a time.

At the consultation, which lasted 90 minutes, and included treatment, we had this beautiful time of sharing faith stories and life. His heart is so tender toward Jesus as a new believer in the past two years. Like Peter and John in Acts 4:20, who told the Sanhedrin, “We cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard,” so it is with this brother. The stories overflowed through him of how he met the Lord and how God has been moving in his life over this short time, healing old hurts and positioning him to share his faith time and time and time again. I felt like I was standing beneath this immense waterfall of blessing pouring down upon me.

It was as if we had known each other for decades not moments, for we shared the same depth of faith in One who has us and our lives in His care. I sat in his office so grateful. I learned more anatomy, certainly, but more crucial still, I was reminded of the anatomy of the Spirit — how God moves to connect us to others in this life. Our lives are not solitary, isolated islands in a vast ocean, but richly connected gifts, one to another, like cells in the body or threads in an immense tapestry meant to bring blessing and life.

I was reminded sitting there connected, woven together with this man’s life of the poem quoted often by evangelist Corrie Ten Boom:

My Life is but a weaving between my Lord and me;
I cannot choose the colours He worketh steadily.
Oft times He weaveth sorrow And I, in foolish pride,
Forget He sees the upper, And I the underside.

Not till the loom is silent
And the shuttles cease to fly, Shall God unroll the canvas

And explain the reason why.

The dark threads are as needful In the Weaver’s skilful hand,
as the threads of gold and silver in the pattern He has planned.

He knows, He loves, He cares, nothing this truth can dim.
He gives His very best to those who leave the choice with Him.

Author unknown, oft quoted by Corrie Ten Boom

God is the one at work with and in my life and our lives. He works in the anatomy of His Spirit to accomplish something we could not even imagine as we stay connected, one to another.

May you be drinking huge drafts of this Spirit and abide in God’s presence.

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

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