Most of us are born with five senses, sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch. Some are born deficient or lacking in one or many. It’s my understanding that when that happens, one of their other senses are heightened. We are all capable of heightening each of our senses that we already possess, but we often don’t. Not only do we not work at making them more acute, but we often don’t even think about them until they are impaired or gone.
I’d like you to think for just a moment about each of your senses. Then imagine losing each in turn. Just one. Let’s start with sight. If you awoke this morning, opened your eyes, and could see, did you take in everything your vision afforded you? Did you pay attention to your surroundings, your loved ones, a sunrise, even storm clouds and their unique formation? Doubtful. I usually don’t. I actually operate from a place of blurred vision, peeking out of one eye until I have enough coffee to actually open both of them. I’m currently more aware of my sight because I’ve just had surgery on my left eye, and can’t see out of it. I’m noticing how much I miss only having vision out of my right eye. It throws off my depth perception, it frustrates me that I have to turn my head so far in order to take everything in. However, I make myself stop and thank God for the vision I do have. Too many have little or none. How sad.
Let’s now think about our hearing. One of my most favorite things to do is sit outside, just listening to nature. The sweet songs of birds, the gentle movement of the air as it blows through the trees, the cadence of the cicadas as the heat rises through the day, the precious laughter of children. Oh, the many joys we ignore throughout the day.
How about smell? What’s your favorite smell? Research has proven certain smells will transport us back in time. Have you ever had a smell waft past your nose and immediately thought of a loved one who is no longer here? The smell of perfume, pipe tobacco, flowers, or food. One of my favorites is freshly brewed coffee. So many smells bring me such wonderful memories. Of course, there are the smells that we think we’d like to lose our sense of smell with, sulfur, dirty diapers, blood, ammonia, rotting flesh, okay, I’ll quit. But the fact is, we have a wonderful, God-given gift we take advantage of all the time.
Taste. I LOVE food! Taste is a big one for me. I love a well made, unique meal. The tastes and textures all dancing on my tongue as I savor a delicious dish. We even have the ability to salivate just at the thought of favorite foods. However, have you ever had an illness that stripped you of your sense of taste for a time? It’s very frustrating. I think I’d be better able to lose weight if God took my ability to taste from me, but I’d rather be fat and enjoy the flavors I savor.
And last, but certainly not least, touch. I think it so sad that there are people who have lost the ability, whether due to tragedy such as being burned or by phobias. Touch is so important that babies who have been neglected and have not received enough touch in their formative years will actually have their growth stunted. It’s been proven that we all need at least eight hugs a day to be mentally well balanced. EIGHT! So many go through days or weeks with no physical contact. I am so fortunate, this is a sense I don’t take for granted. I may sometimes wish I could be alone for even a moment, but I live with five affectionate, loving people. We actually make a point of stopping when we pass one another to just give each other a hug instead of exchanging air without acknowledgement.
Now, I want to challenge every one of you to spend the next 48-hours paying strict attention to each of your operational senses. Notice the things that just pass you by on a regular basis, and find the appreciation for all the things you’re blessed with because you have the senses you do. Your challenge begins now. Be blessed then be a blessing!