Whenever I go to the dentist I think about sin.

This is because tooth decay is so similar to sin decay. Little openings which grow worse when simple disciplines are overlooked. [Or, when we allow the wrong things to fill our mouths]. Sow an attitude and you reap a habit, a character, and then a life. The spiritual life goes better when we give attention to small details.

I was at the dentist yesterday. So I've been thinking a lot about sin in the last 24 hours. I won't bore you with my file of awful dentist experiences! But this time he looked into my hole-y mouth (I have a few gaps now) and gently chided me about how if I didn't wait so long to come in and I wouldn't have so many situations that are unsalvageable.


Now there is a word to get stuck in my gullet (just beyond my final tooth).


Maybe this is where tooth decay is so different from sin decay? Because there is no sin situation that is unsalvageable. There is no sin situation beyond the touch of God's restoring grace expressed to us in Christ's redeeming death.

I might stand at the sink and brush vigorously hoping that such brushing will salvage a bad situation. But it won't. It never will. But I can kneel at my chair and confess quietly knowing that such confession will salvage a bad situation. It will. It always will.

nice chatting



Greg said…
"Unsalvageable" sounds a little morose doesn't it - did he really say that?

The amusing thing is that yesterday I went to the dentist as well, after an absence of more than 12 years. Although for me the story was quite different - she complimented me on my lovely teeth and there were no fillings or anything. I was most relieved!

On the negative side, there isn't any spiritual analogy / pithy sermon illustration I can draw out of my visit though. Believe me, I tried!

So is that a fair trade off, do you think. Pithy sermon illustration for some "unsalvageable" teeth?
Paul said…
Believe you me, he used that word!

I think I'd rather come away from a dentist without the sermon illustration.

Well done, Mr Colgate.
Paul said…
Now when I go to the dentist I may think of grace.

My NZ dentist misdiagnosed the problem last week and I arrived in India with the pain steadily increasing until it was unbearable. One thing led to another until I surrendered to Dr Surender in his little clinic beside the road just 5mins from where I was staying.

He opened up on a Sunday night just for me.

In 90min of the most skilled and care-full dentistry I have ever experienced he completed a deep root canal that has left me painfree ... and then he charged me NZD80 for a procedure which in NZ would cost me upwards of NZD1200.

Yes, grace is the word that comes to mind. Grace to cover all my unsalvageable sin...

Popular Posts