God designed His creation to work together. Just think about how many systems in nature involve multiple parts or a variety of organisms functioning together; photosynthesis requires the sun and the plant; the water cycle needs the sun, water vapor, and liquid water; decomposition involves plants or dead animals, scavengers, fungi, and microbes. Each part of Creation works incredibly well with the others. Now some would say that mutualism and symbiosis just naturally works everything out, over time. They would claim that Mother Nature can do anything if she’s given enough time! But the irreducible complexity that we see seems to indicate that there was a Designer from the beginning.
And scientists are increasingly seeing that this collaboration between organisms is true with the human body. Did you know that foreign cells outnumber the cells in your body 10 to 1? That’s right! There are ten times more cells from microorganisms like bacteria and fungi than human cells in your body.
These microorganisms are collectively called your “microbiome.” Each person’s is unique, sort of like a fingerprint, but there’s a similarity between the microbiome of parents and their children and between siblings. We start collecting our microbiome from our mother when we’re born and pass through the birth canal. We get more of these good bacteria from breastmilk and our environment. Some research even shows that bacteria from a pregnant woman’s mouth may make their way to the placenta and then the growing baby, starting off their microbiome even before they are born!
Your microbiome varies depending on where you might look on your body. The inhabitants of your oily scalp are different from those that live on your dry legs which are different from the microbes thriving in your mouth which are again different from the bacteria swimming around in your gut.
Your microbiome is incredibly important. Research has shown how it helps train your immune system, assists with digestion and regulation of your metabolism, and can even affect your mood! A microbiome that’s “off” can possibly contribute to depression, anxiety, and stress! Wow, bacteria are more significant that you might have thought!
Some researchers believe the Western diet, antibiotics, and our obsession with cleanliness is affecting our health by killing off good bacteria, viruses, and fungi that help us live healthy lives. Some believe that diseases that are rapidly increasing in the West, but not in less developed countries, may be partially the result of a change in our microbiome.
This world that you can’t see is an incredibly important world. Of course, like everything else in the universe, our microbiome is affected by the fall of mankind, and sometimes things go very wrong or viruses and bad bacteria make us sick. But it wasn’t that way in the beginning! The majority of good microbes that still inhabit our bodies remind us that originally all bacteria, viruses, and fungi were designed “very good” and lived in harmony with the rest of creation.
The Bible describes in detail Who created all of this: “There is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him.” That’s right, He knows you, AND every organism in your body. Do you know Him?
I’m David Rives…Truly the heavens declare the glory of God.