Saturday, May 2, 2009


Some time ago, I took my daughter to the dentist to have a tooth removed. No one was excited about this appointment, especially not my daughter. It was windy and cold outside, so apparently, the weather wasn't too thrilled about the meeting either. The stiff wind blew us into the dentist’s office, which was beginning to fill for the morning. After what seemed like an eternity, we were moved into the torture chamber examination room.

When the dentist came in, he explained what would happen and asked my daughter to raise her hand if she ever felt pain during the process.

The dentist began. Right away, my daughter's hand went up. For the rest of the procedure, her hand never came down.

Even though she had received enough anesthesia to drop a horse, the pressure was still highly uncomfortable for her. I held her hand, but it did not help at all. Overall, the procedure was quick and routine. The tooth came out and it was done.

Don't tell my daughter that. When the dentist went to shake her hand after he was done, she gave him the dirtiest look I have ever seen her give. He looked at me, chuckled and shrugged his shoulders as he walked out.

The whole experience made me think. As a father, I wanted to keep my daughter from hurting. I didn't like it that she was hurting. I could understand why she was upset. But, it was all for her own good. There was a purpose behind the pain. And though I could have stopped the process, I did not. Because to stop or avoid the process would have been worse for her than allowing it to continue.

That reminds me of my relationship with God.

In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.

1 Peter 1:6-7

Life is filled with ups and downs. Sometimes it's just the normal waves that exist on the ocean of life. Other times, there are more serious tempests that can severely shake us. But each has its purpose. God takes each experience and uses that to develop or remove areas of our character to make us more like Him. In the end, He desires that we reflect him. As John Bevere said, "When we get to heaven, we are going to be like Christ. That means that one of us is going to have to change."

Just as I want nothing but the best for my daughter, so God wants the best for us.

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Jeremiah 29:11

There are things that we have to go through because they are necessary in order to grow. These experiences may be painful or uncomfortable, but they are necessary. That they happen does not mean that God does not exist or that God does not love us. After all, we have not been promised a smooth ride. What we have been promised is that He will hold our hands, guide and comfort us.

Hearts will hurt. Losses will be felt. Delays will be suffered. And yet in the end, we do this all for a reason.

But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 3:13-14

So, the idea then, is to trust God as we go forward. He will hold us by the hand, and make the way clear for us. The trip may have its painful stops, but the journey will not be defined by its low points, but by the glory at the end.


Anthony Bass said...

Yes, thanks for the post, the pain in my life represents God removing something corrupted in my does not feel good, but its better I not take the rotten parts of me into eternity.


Lawyer said...

That's a great way to put it.