Sundown on Wednesday, September 4 marks the beginning of Rosh Hashanah or Jewish New Year. For the Jewish community, this is a time of reflection, purification and hopeful contemplation of the future. Not unlike our Western New Year's celebrations, Rosh Hashanah is a time of recapping or regrouping in order to advance. The word I shared on Ayin Gimel is still being fulfilled in the lives of God's people, both now and in the days ahead.
It is with a heavy heart that I begin writing this month’s topic, “Back Posture And Spine Health.” I chose the title, “He’s Got Your Back,” just days before our beloved dog, “Selah”, took her last breath. If there was ever a time Lillian and I needed to know God had our back it is now (prayers graciously accepted!).
If you had the good fortune of reading April’s edition of HCTW in my article I mentioned a car accident where I went through the windshield of a car, breaking my neck as a result. Even though I was told I would never walk again God miraculously healed me completely and I walked out of the hospital three days later! Years later I took a fall down a flight of ice-covered stairs in Gatlinburg and I was rear ended by another car a few years later. Because of these injuries I visited a chiropractor once a week for a spinal adjustment.
In 1996 Lillian and I moved from Nashville, Tennessee, to Florida so I could take a position as an associate pastor and youth pastor in Coral Springs. Our church office was in a shopping center next door to a chiropractor so one day I walked into his office to meet him. The chiropractor was Howard Newman I shook his hand and said, “How are you?” his response, “Simply spine how are you!” I totally cracked up (no pun intended) little did I know that my former chiropractor in Nashville, graduated from Life Chiropractic with Howard and they were close friends!
Today, 17 years later, I am not only Howard’s patient I am Howard Newman’s friend and he has taught me so much about the spine, its function and the body’s need for alignment. Howard Newman is a wealth of information and his state of the art clinic in Coconut Creek Florida East West Physicians offers the best of western and eastern healing modalities.
One term I picked up from Howard was subluxation, which occurs when one or more of the bones of your spine (vertebrae) move out of alignment and create pressure on, or irritate spinal nerves. This can cause a myriad of issues as these nerves run through the bones of you spine thus subluxation causes those nerves to malfunction and interfere with the signals traveling over those nerves. This interference of signals to other parts of the body inhibits the body from operating at 100%.
It does not take much to subluxate your spine believe it or not it is often a little impact like missing a curb, bending over the sink while brushing your teeth, starting an old school lawnmower, bowling or even sneezing! The culprit or pre-condition should be no surprise to anyone…STRESS causes your muscles to tense and tense muscles make it easy for bones to become misaligned or subluxated.
One day while reading the bible I came across a verse I have read countless times Matthew 5:9 “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called the children of God” and it hit me…there is a big difference between peacemaking and peacekeeping just as there is a big difference between a chiropractor and a masseuse. On a recent trip to Minnesota a dear friend booked a massage for my wife and I and the masseuse would say, “how is that too much pressure not enough?” Although the massage made my muscles a little less sore it certainly didn’t help with my alignment. Yet one visit to the chiropractor and BANG alignment… no questions asked.
In the last 29 years of ministry God seems much more like a chiropractor than He does a masseuse He knows exactly what it takes to move me and bring me back into alignment.
Here is a working definition for alignment:
“The process of adjusting parts so that they are in proper relative positions or order.”
Have you ever driven your car when it is out of alignment? It makes a bumpy road bumpier, a crooked road more crooked and it takes a lot of extra effort and concentration just to keep the car straight because even on a smooth surface there is a constant pull to one side or the other. The problem is compounded when other people choose to ride with you in your misaligned car. And so it is on this journey called life. When your life becomes misaligned with God your journey becomes a perilous one at best things begin to wobble and shake, you are pulled in many directions and eventually you can completely lose control. When you are a leader (leaders are leaders because people are following them!) and your life is misaligned sadly the people who are following you are equally misaligned thus creating a fool’s parade that’s heading nowhere fast.
Sometimes the reason we continue traveling in the wrong direction is pride. I remember a friend telling me that her husband refused to stop and ask directions if they were lost he would say, “I’m not lost you’re lost I know exactly where I am going,” she said once he drove four hours out of their way because he had too much pride to admit he was going the wrong way until finally they ran out of gas!
When you look at the horizon it appears to be the line where Earth meets sky but as you move, the horizon moves with you it’s just an optical illusion. A man can miss his objective by hundreds of miles if he is navigating by magnetic north all the while believing he was following true north. In the bible and throughout history there are accepted terms for men and women who are aligned with God. In the Old Testament God’s criteria for kings was simple, he did what was good and right in the sight of the Lord or he did what was evil and wrong in the sight of the Lord. Words like upright, upstanding, stand up guy and righteous are just a few that are used to denote a person who is aligned with God.
Obviously people who don’t know God are misaligned but even the righteous have their seasons of misalignment I call this, “The horizontal conundrum of the upright man.” Proverbs 24:16, “Though a righteous man falls seven times, he rises again, but the wicked are brought down by calamity.”
You can’t keep a good man down when a righteous man falls he is redeemed when a wicked man falls there is no redemption available for him. Look at the story of King David in Psalm 23, “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside quiet waters He restores my soul. He guides (aligns) me in path of righteousness for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, (not death just the shadow!) I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod (correction) and your staff (guidance) they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”
Sometimes God makes us lie down in the midst of our busy lives to align our souls (thought, will and emotions). Psalm 23 was written on a battlefield. God made David drop his sword and lay down on the battlefield in the midst of a bloody battle; to show David who was really in charge and to bring him to a place of trust and peace in the knowledge that the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob HAD HIS BACK!
Remember dear reader it is usually the little things that remain secret that eventually lead to an obvious misalignment with God. Song of Songs 2:15, “Catch for us the foxes, the little foxes that ruin the vineyards our vineyards that are in bloom” it doesn’t take much to get your life out of alignment and begin careening down the road to ruin. Friend, take a minute and get to a quiet place and do what King David did…ask God for a personal diagnostic test! Psalm 139: 23,24 (A psalm of David) “Search me O God, and know my heart; try me and know my thoughts and see if there be any wickedness in me and lead me in the way everlasting.”
God knows you inside and out He wants you to know yourself so you can make the proper adjustments to be aligned with Him. When your car is in alignment you experience a smooth ride because the car is already headed straight and the shock absorbers can more readily do their job. When your life is in alignment your course is set to the straightest road available, the King’s Way! Be advised being in alignment doesn’t patch the potholes or remove the bumps it simply allows the greatest shock absorber in the world, Jesus Christ to do His job, to carry you! No matter what life throws at you always remember, HE HAS YOUR BACK…
PERSONAL ALIGNMENT CHECK LIST:
If you were lost on the road would you have too much pride to ask for directions?
Who are you following?
- When was the last time you took a self-diagnostic test with The Almighty? What did He show you about you?
I am constantly amazed that so many find life through my death…dying to self releases the fragrance of Christ not the stench of death but life incarnate because as you decrease Christ IN you increases… Galatians 2:20 perfectly articulates this downside up paradigm. The Kingdom of God is an “upside down” Kingdom where the servant is the master of all. The Kingdom is a world outside of this world, a sky beyond the sky and a government that exists independently from man’s government and it operates with it’s own set of laws and principles and non linear physics. Gods Kingdom frustrates carnal man because mans thinking is diametrically apposed to it because it exists outside of his intellect in a realm that is organically Spiritual. Do you want the seeker to find Christ in you? Then, die to yourself as a caterpillar must die to reveal his true self to the world…a butterfly…if you are a believer your “true self” is Christ! Either we are “hidden” in Christ or if we refuse to die, He remains hidden in us and the seeker continues his sojourn for truth. If you are no longer your own and purchased with a price (blood of Jesus) how then can we remain selfish? Maybe a better term for being “saved” could be…conversion, transformation or metamorphosis…Die to live, Live to die- Michael
March 15, 2013
Next time you get in your car look at the cryptic message in your side view mirror, “Objects in mirror are closer than they appear.” The reason that message is there is to gently remind you that perspective is skewed and proximity is absolute! Accidents occur because of faulty perspective. In a large shopping mall there is usually a large info board with a map of the entire mall and a big black X which reads, “you are here.” In a world in flux it is imperative to know where you are and WHO you are! Emmanuel means, “God with us” pause and think about that statement…the God of ALL creation the maker of Heaven and Earth is with US…right here right now! The reason you may not have realized it is that He is soooo BIG and soooo Close that you couldn’t see Him! Like a fractal image that is too large to see in its entirety you may only see the edge or a fragment of the whole picture. I have felt a need to film “street video’s” for people who may never darken the door of a church…I could use some help. You see I am making these videos with my own resources…after you watch this video…if it moves you, help me move it! You can help me help others by making a donation, sharing the video and praying for the “Street videos” project. Watch it today…I pray the presence of God will inhabit your proximity today! Love,
Michael S. Tyrrell
For you created my inmost being, you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place- Psalm 139: 13-15.
You are a wonder, a miracle, a divine orchestration, God’s Magnum Opus, His masterpiece! In all of creation, Man is God’s crowning achievement. As we study Genesis 1:26, 27 we find an astounding truth; Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him, male and female he created them. The ONLY time you see the “Godhead” or “Trinity” (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) uniquely involved in the 6 day’s of creation (the seventh day was designated as a Sabbath, or day of rest) was in the creation of man!!! Look again, “Let US make man in OUR image… wow. Why is this significant? Actually it can’t possibly be overstated we are the only creation beside God himself that has a “triune” nature or, three-in-one in our case, body, soul and spirit! And here is the kicker that is all inclusive, meaning we were created with moral free agency or free will. Angels are created beings that do God’s bidding while man is God’s creation with the power to make their own decisions. It sounds like a gamble doesn’t it? Creating man with the power to choose, what if man chose to reject Him? God is secure in His love (Agape, or selfless love) and what could be more selfless than to sacrifice His only son as a ransom for His favored creation, you and I? With this introductory foundation in place, let’s examine God’s uber creation the human body.
For years, scientists have reiterated an amazing statistic human beings only utilize 10% of their brains potential! Think about that all of the inventions, accomplishments and genius of man came from 10% of our total ability. My inquiring mind immediately asks the question, “What abilities reside in that unused 90%?” Dear friends, my purpose for writing this article is to get you to realize the potential of this extraordinary “Earth suit” that was custom made for you, by God, to maintain gravity while you are here and house two greater occupants, your soul and your spirit. Speaking of gravity I am amused that scientists often speak of the earth’s “gravitational” pull yet fail to mention the fact that without the body’s electrical charge we would not be properly grounded ourselves! Yes dear reader if you were not “electric” you would not be reading this article or doing anything else for that matter for your amazing brain operates on electricity… is that so hard to believe? Imagine your computer, television or hair dryer operating without power yet they are inanimate objects at best! Everything we do is controlled and enabled by electrical signals running through this conduit known as the human body. We are made up of atoms, atoms in turn are made up of protons, neutrons and electrons. Protons produce a positive charge, neutrons produce a neutral charge and electrons produce a negative charge. When these charges are out of balance, an atom becomes either positively or negatively charged. This variance between the types of charges allows electrons to flow from one atom to another. This flow of electrons, or a negative charge, is called electricity. Since we are comprised of masses of atoms, our bodies generate electricity. In the movie, “The Matrix” the hero, Neo is referred to as “copper top” not because he has red hair, but because like a Duracell battery, Neo (like all of us) produce electricity! Now that we know how we are powered lets examine some of the other amazing attributes of the human body. I previously mentioned that most scientists agree that we only utilize 10% of our brains total capacity with that being said I find it humorous that they can’t agree on the amount of memory the brain can store! Obviously it is absolutely impossible to ascertain that information with only a 10% working knowledge of the brain. Here is something to consider, since each of us are completely unique as original as a snowflake with no two alike doesn’t it stand to reason that our ability to utilize memory may invade the other 90%? And if I may add insult to injury, perhaps our lifestyles, environment, selective memory ie, our free choice design could also be another determining factor in what we remember yet exclusive of our actual memory capacity? The educated honest assessment can be derived from the obvious… no one could possibly calculate the extraordinary capabilities of our marvelous minds with the exception of it’s architect, God almighty! Maybe your brain is reeling already from what you have just read lets move to another wonder, the human heart.
In the heart of a man he devises many plans, but in the end his steps are ordered of the Lord – Proverbs 16:9.
Who among us could possibly discern the power of the human heart? We all know the hearts elemental functionality it is the epicenter of life, belonging to the circulatory system it pumps blood to the entire body. The heart also fills the blood with vital nutrients from the digestive system and oxygen from the respiratory system. As you can imagine if I were to attempt to go into detail concerning any part of our amazing body I would be writing till Jesus returned and would have only scratched the surface! So let me quickly develop some food for thought concerning the heart. If the heart was merely a pump why does the Bible contain so many scriptures alluding to a far greater function? Here are just a few, Psalms 14:1, The fool says in his heart, “there is no God.” Psalms 19:14, May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer. Proverbs 13:12 Hope deferred makes the heart sick. Proverbs 27:19, As water reflects a face, so a man’s heart reflects the man. Matthew 12:34, Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. Romans 10:10, For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. There are a multitude of scriptures concerning the heart and all of them allude to far greater function than that of an inanimate blood pump. Could the heart also be a moral compass the place where discernment originates a veritable storehouse of feelings and emotions, passion and purity? Is it possible that there is a true difference between mental assent (thought) and heartfelt knowing (belief)? Consider this, every single patient that undergoes open-heart surgery reports an unexplained, often debilitating depression afterwards? Could that depression have anything to do with the fact that a human (surgeon) actually held their heart in his hand? Remember before modern medicine or technology the only being that had access to the human heart was God Himself. You can also read myriads of medical reports of heart transplant patients that testify that they have different feelings, emotions, thoughts and even beliefs after receiving a donor’s heart. As much as we know about the brain (10%) we know even less about the power of the heart. We are indeed fearfully and wonderfully made!
As a man thinketh, so he is. Proverbs 23:7
Although the mind/body connection is relatively a newly accepted idea, its truth is ancient knowledge and the Bible is rife with understanding on the subject. You can think yourself sick or healthy, poor or wealthy you can think yourself defeated or victorious, pitiful or glorious it is up to you! “Nothing shall be impossible for those who believe.” Matthew17:19, 20. Can you recall a time in your life when everyone told you couldn’t do something yet you had already seen it happen in your minds eye and nothing could discourage you? What happened? Of coarse you did it, why? As a man thinketh, so he is!
Your body will respond to what you believe. You don’t believe you don’t conceive. Consider this you are depressed and despondent because you cannot pay your mortgage yet the same day, a stranger hands you a check for the exact amount of your need and instantly you are happy again! Here is a secret there is a huge difference between joy and happiness. Happiness is dependant upon circumstances joy is the bedrock of your salvation (belonging to God) happiness vacillates but joy is unshakable. At the beginning of this article I mentioned that God created man in His own image. You are divinely capable of the impossible because you are created in Gods image and you can’t set the bar any higher than that! We live the life fantastic before us lies a myriad of possibilities. Believe it or not what you believe you receive God has given us carte blanche! Mark 11:23, “Truly I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go throw yourself into the sea’ and does not doubt in their heart but believes what they say will happen, it will be done for them.” As you can see this only applies to God’s favored creation…man, with one proviso; the man belongs to God! You see, if a stranger demanded the same rights as a member of your family you would not be obligated to them but if it was your own son you would give him all you have, and so it is with God. That is why so many exist without ever experiencing the fullness of their potential. Luke 18:27, Jesus said, “Whatever is impossible with man is possible with God.” Faith in yourself will take you the extra mile but faith in God will take you to eternity. Love is a risk God created you with the freedom to choose for yourself.
While you were reading this article, thousands of amazing functions where taking place that you where not even aware of, cellular communication, respiration, cellular turnover (you lose 30 to 40,000 dead skin cells per minute!) perspiration, replication, imagination, digestion, contemplation, assimilation, ionization, circulation, restoration, carbonation and prayerfully salvation producing transformation creating elation which guarantees eternal elevation! You are God’s favorite, equipped with an extraordinary body and a soul that is capable of infinite thought, will and emotions but in the end your spirit will be your true identity so dear reader to fully function to the letter of God’s blueprint for the human body you must be fully His. How can we escape if we ignore so great a salvation?
May you live your life to the fullest- Michael S. Tyrrell