God’s Perfect Use of Imperfect People, Part 2

February 9, 2015 at 12:35 PM 1 comment

Brain lobesIn our first part of this short series, we referred to Elijah and Peter, two individuals who appeared to experience either highs and lows or spoke without really thinking, simply blurting out what came into their heads. Today, we might think of Elijah as being a bit manic/depressive and Peter as ADHD because of these tendencies. I’m not trying to be disrespectful to these godly men at all. I’m simply pointing out that God uses imperfect people to do things for Him and for His glory. However, though we are used by God, the difficulties that the child of God continues to face in this life due to the corruption of sin can be terrible.

We spoke of Elijah’s tremendous high when confronting the priests of Baal. Nothing they could do would seem to gain Baal’s attention. Obviously, at that point, God forbid Satan from doing anything at all. When it was Elijah’s turn, he watched (and even took great delight in) God bring a tremendous victory over Baal and his so-called priests/prophets.

What a victory that Elijah basked in, not because of himself, but because he trusted God to outshine the presence of darkness and God did not disappoint. However, shortly after the victory, Jezebel got word of the deaths of her priests and promised to do the same to Elijah. What was his reaction? Fear, which caused him to run. After a day’s journey, he was so tired, hungry, and thirsty that he preferred dying in the desert. He was almost suicidal, but how?

As I explained last time, everything about God’s Creation has been corrupted due to sin that our first parents brought into the world. Don’t worry. We would have done the exact same thing as they did so we cannot take the time to gloat. But haven’t you ever wondered why people then lived for so long? I believe it is due to the fact that what God created, He created perfectly, without blemish. Sin corrupted it instantly and continued to work on it until we are as we are today.

During Adam’s generation and up to several generations after him, people were living into their 900s. Today, the average lifespan is mid-80s for both men and women (provided they live until at least 65). That’s a far cry from living to be 969 as Methuselah did.

Over many generations, our bodies have been ravaged by sin that has corrupted us to the core. It’s not just physically either. It is physiologically as well. Our minds are affected by the ravages of sin and because of that, people have all sorts of issues that do not go away once we become Christians.

Take a look at the image of the brain lobes. The Frontal lobe is responsible for many “executive functions” like:

  • thinking
  • planning
  • organizing/problem solving
  • emotions
  • behavioral control
  • personality

That’s just what the frontal lobe does. That’s scary to me because it wouldn’t take much for the Frontal lobe to go out of whack. Injuries can do it. Genetics can cause problems. Environmental factors can also create problems as well.

Let’s unpack this for a minute. A normal person (whose brain is still not perfect!) might react to simply being tired by saying, “I’m tired,” and find the need to walk around, drink a cup of coffee, or maybe take a quick nap. A person who has issues in the Frontal lobe might be tired and end up feeling not only tired, but depressed, even Christians!

I want to keep this as non-technical as possible. Our brain functions with the help of electric impulses. These electric impulses or “nerve impulses” are what sends and receives messages in our brain. These are not magically “improved” once a person becomes a Christian. If you are sluggish before you become a Christian, you will still be sluggish afterwards.

A nerve impulse is an electrical signal that travels along an axon. There is an electrical difference between the inside of the axon and its surroundings, like a tiny battery. When the nerve is activated, there is a sudden change in the voltage across the wall of the axon, caused by the movement of ions in and out of the neuron. This triggers a wave of electrical activity that passes from the cell body along the length of the axon to the synapse (emphasis added).

The very next phase of how your brain works is exceedingly important! It is with this next part that people learn if their brain function is up to par or below par. It has to do with the synapse and neurotransmitters. Please pay attention!

When a nerve impulse reaches the synapse at the end of a neuron, it cannot pass directly to the next one. Instead, it triggers the neuron to release a chemical neurotransmitter. The neurotransmitter drifts across the gap between the two neurons. On reaching the other side, it fits into a tailor-made receptor on the surface of the target neuron, like a key in a lock. This docking process converts the chemical signal back into an electrical nerve impulse.

In short, for the nerve impulse to move without interruption along neuron to the synapse and then to another neuron to the next synapse, etc., the brain uses what scientists call neurotransmitters, which are chemicals in the brain that keep things moving, literally. A person who does not produce enough neurotransmitters in the neurons in their brain will have issues. They can be small issues to large issues depending upon how “out of range” their neurotransmitters are for them.

neurotransmittersTake a look at this image regarding neurotransmitters (click it to enlarge). As you can see, this particular individual has very low neurotransmitters and that means there will be issues with how well the brain functions. A person whose neurotransmitters are that far out of range may constantly deal with fatigue or depression. They may lack the willpower to do what they would like to do. They might find it difficult to remember things, lack the ability to keep their emotions in check, act out or lash out at people all because they lack what the “normal” person has and takes for granted in their brain – an ample supply of neurotransmitters that do the job for the “normal” person.

In the image, there are four neurotransmitters that are common to brain wave activity: Serotonin, Dopamine, Norepinephrine, and Epinephrine. Each of these neurotransmitters works differently, having their own job to do. We’ll explore their individual roles in an upcoming article and we’ll also discuss the importance of gamma-Aminobutyric acid (GABA).

But please note that the neurotransmitters referenced on the chart are well below the norm. GABA is the only chemical that is “in range.” This person would have a difficult time being and remaining focused, planning, dealing with their emotions, and trying to live above the “fog” that may be constant with them. It’s not “demonic” when this happens, but certainly, demons can make good use of this!

Now, if that person referenced by the chart is a Christian, what do you think she might think about herself? She will likely spend a good amount of time thinking she is unworthy, unlovable, unable to do what God wants her to do. God can obviously still use this person but the person has to get to a point of either A) ignoring way she feels about herself, or B) find some way to increase the neurotransmitter activity in her brain so that she can do things easier that most people take for granted.

In the above example, if the woman’s neurotransmitters are that low, chances are good that being a Christian will actually exacerbate her situation because the enemy will use it to make her feel even worse about herself.

Christians need to realize that becoming and being a Christian does not automatically heal ailments that we might have. We continue to live in dying bodies that will soon succumb to the grave. Along the way, many ailments can be contracted that will affect a Christian’s outlook on life.

Next up, we’ll delve into some of the things that can be done so that we, as Christians, have fewer “negative” things to have to deal within in life.

 

 

Entry filed under: Religious - Christian - End Times, Religious - Christian - Prophecy, Religious - Christian - Theology, salvation.

God’s Perfect Use of Imperfect People, Part 1 God’s Perfect Use of Imperfect People, Part 3

1 Comment

  • […] In our previous articles, we have been dealing with imperfect people whom God can and does use to spread His gospel of grace. While you would never tell a person with a broken leg to “snap out of it and walk!” I find it fascinating when we feel that we need to do this with people who are “depressed” or “down in the dumps.” […]


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