Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Brain: What an Incredible Creation!

Yesterday we had a workshop at the Legacy Equipping Center using a DVD series offered through James Robison's ministry, Life Today! The series is called Your Body, God's Temple. We watched the first 4 sessions by Caroline Leaf, PhD, author of Who Switched Off My Brain? I highly recommend this series and her book. I've linked the title of this post to the order form for this series.

Did you know that there is a place in your brain where scientists actually believe our free will is housed? When a thought comes into your mind, you have a choice. Will you reject it or accept it? Thoughts don't become a stronghold (good or bad) until you decide to accept it, meditate on it and act on it. I also learned that 87% of illness is attributed to our thought life and 13% is attributed to genetics and environment. Wow! That certainly motivates me to have a positive attitude and watch what I let my mind dwell upon.

Once a negative memory is implanted in the brain, it stays. However, God can heal us by giving us His transforming truth to cover that negative memory. Before the healing takes place, one can think about a memory and experience a great deal of pain. After God heals the individual, he can think about the memory but will experience peace and joy instead of pain.

I learned a great deal about stress from these DVDs. When we are stressed, the chemicals released in our brain that are needed in small amounts begin to be released in greater unhealthy quantities. That is why when you are stressed, you are more susceptible to colds, headaches, digestive problems, etc. Continued stress causes attacks on the heart and arteries, followed by the immune system and finally the brain. Stress in children has an even more negative affect than on adults. Dr. Leaf said that allowing your child to continue to be in stress for an extended period of time is a form of abuse. Think about our community and how much is expected out of our children. The homework level I've seen put on my daughters is at times extremely overwhelming, with levels of learning that I don't remember ever even learning when I was their age. Besides that, children have so many extra-curricular activities that are pulling them in so many different directions. And with half the marriages ending in divorce and the stress of parents in financial strains because of the economy, you know that has to add to the stress level in our children.

I am thankful that God's Word lets us know that we can have peace that passes understanding and joy unspeakable and full of glory! We need to heed to that and teach our children to trust in the Prince of Peace. The answer to stress is allowing our thoughts to stay on God. We have to model for our children times when we pull away from the business of life and get alone with Him.

Isaiah 26:3 NKJ
You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on You, Because he trusts in You.

1 comment:

  1. re the brain and decision-making etc., you might enjoy Jeff Schwartz's book _The Mind and the Brain_. I don't quite agree with the "quantum Zeno" stuff and his comments on philosophy (he's somewhat of a Buddhist) but the stuff about how the brain works and the near-miraculous stories of how stroke victims sometimes recover the use of their limbs in spite of permanent brain damage -- for us who believe, these inspire many "How Great Thou Art" moments.

    Your comment about unhealthy brain chemicals brought to mind _How to Improve Your Marriage without Talking about it_ by... i forget. Patricia Love and... Steven Stosny. review here: The book is worth a look.