Posted by: glorifyhim1 | February 6, 2012

Let the Healing Begin!


As I sat with gauze stuffed in my numb mouth, I felt a strange sense of contentment and relief. As miserable as I felt, I knew it was over. Now the healing could begin.

Going to the dentist is not one of my favorite things to do. It’s not because of my dentist, but because of me. Over the years I have amassed quite a collection of silver fillings that are now in danger of breaking down and requiring more extensive work. Until last week, I had managed to avert any major problem, but then it happened. While brushing my teeth, one of my molars simply broke off, both filling and tooth. As I looked at the rather large piece of tooth in my hand, I knew this could mean major trouble.

So before going to the dentist, I began to rehearse my probable options. Perhaps the dentist could save it with a crown. I had no pain so surely I wouldn’t need a root canal. But what if a root canal were needed? Maybe I should just tell the dentist that I wanted him to pull it. But what if it needed to be cut out by an oral surgeon? What then? On and on I considered what I should do as I waited for my appointment.

And then I prayed! Stop striving I felt God telling me. Wait and see what the dentist has to say. For the first time since the ordeal began I felt that I was ready to listen to what the dentist had to say. Instead of going in determined that I just wanted to have my tooth removed, I would listen. I finally felt at peace about the situation.

When the dentist examined my tooth, I refrained from telling him what I thought. I listened as he presented me with the various alternatives, but immediately recognized his concern that it might be impossible to save my tooth. “Should I just have it pulled?” I finally asked. You guessed it! He agreed!

So as I sat with gauze stuffed in my numb mouth, I thought about the last few days and what had happened. And once again God spoke to my heart. This time he used a simple broken tooth to remind me of some pretty important truths.

  • Just as I rehearsed what I should do about my broken tooth, how often do I agonize over decisions I need to make, evaluate options and possibilities, and try to work things out first in my own mind – and then I pray? Yet the psalmist reminds us that God is always available and ready to hear our call. “Evening and morning and at noon I will pray, and cry aloud, and He shall hear my voice” (Psalm 55:17).
  • Just as I was tempted to go to my dentist and tell him how I wanted my problem handled, how often do I go to God the same way? I go to Him with my list of what I want rather than actually seeking Him. The prophet Isaiah tells us: “Seek the Lord while He may be found, call upon Him while He is near” (Isaiah 55:6). When I seek God, I’m earnestly desiring to know Him better. Discerning His direction is a by-product of knowing Him. As I search the Scriptures, talk to Him, admit my questions and lack of understanding, He works in me to convict me, change me, and direct my steps. As David instructed his son, Solomon, “Know the God of your father, and serve Him with a loyal heart and with a willing mind; for the Lord searches all hearts and understands all the intent of the thoughts. If you seek Him, He will be found by you; but if you forsake Him, He will cast you off forever” (1 Chronicles 28:9).
  • As I stewed over my tooth problem, I realized that if I really trusted my dentist to do the right thing, I should listen to what he had to say. Do I really believe that God can handle my problems? Do I believe that He is able and that I can trust Him to care for me? His Word assures us that we can do both. He is surely able: “Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is there anything too hard for Me?” (Jeremiah 32:27). His Word also declares that nothing can separate us from His love (see Romans 8:37-39) and it instructs us: “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you” (1 Peter 5:6-7).

Through my broken tooth, God helped me to become more aware of how I come to Him. It is probably good for all of us to ask ourselves the above questions from time to time. When we come to God earnestly seeking to know Him, to learn from Him, and to be guided by Him, we will always find a God who is able and willing to meet us where we are and guide us to where we need to be. You see, unlike my dentist who could not save my tooth because too much had broken off, God is in the saving business. Luke 19:10 tells us: “For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.” It doesn’t matter how broken or scarred we may be, He can take us just as we are and make us ready and fit for work in His kingdom. Sometimes God grants miracles in our lives as He removes or solves problems we face. At other times, we ourselves become God’s miracle as He lovingly walks with us through our difficult circumstances and grants us peace in our storms. That’s up to Him, but either way we will discover a strange sense of contentment and peace as we surrender to Him. Let the healing begin!

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