Sunday, February 17, 2013

A Remarkable Medical Breakthrough?

I recently read an article in Forbes magazine revealing that the American people spend roughly $2.5 trillion on healthcare each year — almost $8,000 for every man, woman, and child.

How would you respond if someone claimed that they had discovered a brand new treatment that could radically change the face of medicine in America? The person then assured you that this same treatment had already radically changed his own life, and he wanted you to share in it. If you’re like me, every cynical instinct in your brain would launch into hyper-drive. You would assume that this treatment must be a financial scam or a worthless remedy. Suppose you then learned that several major universities, government agencies, and other institutions endeavored to examine its effects on people, and the researchers were stunned by their positive findings!

  • Researchers from Florida State University, the University of Colorado, and the University of Texas found that this treatment extended a person’s life expectancy by an average of 7.6 years. Upon further research, you discover that a study conducted by researchers at Duke University produced similar results. Even WebMD affirmed the veracity of these incredible findings.
  • The International Journal of Psychiatry in Medicine reported that this particular treatment is associated with dramatically reduced blood pressure.
  • Duke University Medical Center published a study revealing that recipients of this treatment typically had superior immune systems.
  • The University of Manitoba found that people who take this treatment are far less likely to commit suicide.
  • One article in U.S. News & World Report explained that this treatment “benefits health in ways that science hasn’t fully explained.” The article added that these treatments “appear to lengthen life expectancy, strengthen immunity, improve the body’s response to stress, and boost other measures of physical health.”
  • The University of North Carolina discovered that high school seniors taking this treatment were less likely to drink, struggle with addictions, face depression, engage in violence, receive traffic tickets, be combative with parents, skip school, steal, trespass, and suffer from in-school disciplinary actions. They were also more likely to have a positive outlook on life, receive higher grades, exercise, experience happier home lives, participate in extracurricular activities, graduate high school, and find stable relationships with their peers.
  • USA Today published an article verifying that this treatment had impressive effects upon the nation’s college students. According to the article, these students “have better emotional and mental health…. In addition, the students [who did not take this treatment] are more than twice as likely to report poor mental health or depression.”

In a society that spends $2.5 trillion on healthcare, how much would our culture be willing to invest to secure such a remarkable treatment? The good news is that this treatment is available to you as a free gift of grace! The truth is that the benefits highlighted in each of the above studies are associated with regular church attendance and a life of faith. While the Christian faith offers and requires far more than a recipe for a healthy and balanced life, it's interesting to find that a life centered around God's Word is baffling many of the same scientists who have claimed that faith ignores science. Indeed, this is further evidence that the Designer of life knows what He is doing.

The Proverbs instruct: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil. This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones” (Proverbs 3:5-8).

Referenced Articles:
  1. Christine Larson, “Health Prayer: Should Religion and Faith Have Roles in Medicine?” U.S. News & World Report, December 22, 2008.
  2. Sarah Hofius, “A Spiritually Inclined Student is a Happier Student,” USA Today, October 26, 2004.
  3. “Religious 12th Graders Hold More Positive Attitudes About Life,” UNC News, December 2002.
  4. “Duke Study: Attending Religious Service May Improve Immune Status,” Duke Medicine News & Communications, November 3, 2004.
  5. “Can Prayer Lower High Blood Pressure,” Jet magazine, August 31, 1998.
  6. “Research Shows Religion Plays A Major Role In Health, Longevity.” Science Daily, May 17, 1999.
  7. “Attend Religious Services, Live Longer,” WebMD, November 25, 2008.

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