But our bodies have many parts, and God has put each part just where he wants it. 1 Corinthians 12:18 (NLT)
Our bodies are made up of many parts. I came to appreciate those many parts when I was undergoing chemotherapy back in 2008. Chemo is like dropping a bomb on an army that is protecting a city. The defending army is taken completely by surprise. The enemy enters the city with their weapons of mass destruction and opens fire. The "White Army" suffers devastating losses and is brought to its knees. It is broken but it is not destroyed. The body desperately fights back and tirelessly creates new soldiers to drive out the invading army as well as rebuild that which has been destroyed.
Many of those parts did not work very well when I was having chemo. Interestingly enough it wasn't the big parts that bothered me as much as the little parts. I've written a blog or two about er... nasal hair. I never knew how important those little guys are until I lost them. Sigh...
This time I want to talk about toenails. Yes, toenails.
One of the side-effects of a drug I took was the loss of nails. Other people who had experienced this side-effect reported that your nail(s) would loosen, turn black and fall off. OUCH! Loosing hair was one thing, nerve pain was another. Those were terrible but I was dealing with them. Loosing a toenail or fingernail however, was another story. I had never lost a nail before but I had torn them and I knew how sensitive the nail bed is. Once again I say, OUCH!
Now I have to say, I generally do not think about my nails other than general care unless there is a snag, a break or a tear. Then they have my full attention. When I was in danger of losing one or all of them, however, the state of my nails, particularly my toenails became of the utmost importance to me. They are small, they aren't very cute, they demand attention but oh, I did not want to lose them for they acted as a shield for my sensitive fingers and toes.
Every day I prayed for my toenails. I prayed that they would stay where they belonged which was firmly attached to my toes. I prayed that they would not turn black. I prayed that God would protect them and that's exactly what He did. Though they temporarily got a bit thick they were never disfigured. They never became loose, they never turned black and it wasn't long before they became completely normal once again.
If your place in the Body of Christ isn't "glamourous" do not despair. We cannot all be the eye, the ear or the leg. Sometimes we must be "just a toenail" but oh what a responsibility that toenail has to keep the toe safe and healthy. Always remember any job God gives you is important.
Scripture quotation taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.