People ‘of a certain age’ may relate to this. I was in a conversation a little while ago with a group of long-standing friends. These are good friends, the type of friends that have passed through a lot in each other’s company. We had got together just to be together and because it had been too long since the last time. We sat in comfortable sofas in a room heated by a newly installed log-burner. The conversation, which I hasten to add I was not a part of at that time, became very animated as my four friends discussed the merits of various dental plans.
As an observer rather than a participant I became both fascinated and horrified, mostly the latter. After about 10 minutes of this I waded into the fray, ‘stop, please stop’. You see it’s not because I’m squeamish about teeth, believe me when I tell you that I have my fair share of tales of dental gore. No, what I reacted to was the thought that our lives, my life, had come to this; a group of middle-aged has-beens sitting around with only the capacity to suck, not even chew, the cud.
I pointed this out to them and to be fair, they got the point. You see we were friends who had spent almost three decades sharing lives, dreaming dreams and realising some of them, overcoming obstacles both external and internal, working, praying, laughing, crying, succeeding, failing, loving, forgiving, encouraging, consoling and well, just being friends in God’s purpose together.
‘So what are you reaching for now, I wanted to know? What do you ‘see’ that you haven’t ‘touched’ yet, where are your ambitions? This is when the conversation got interesting because we all began to focus on what we wanted to ‘taste’ and ‘feed on’ from God’s realm rather than whether or not we still had the dental apparatus to feed on anything more than chicken soup and stewed apples.
I suppose that I become more conscious of this train of thought as I pass various milestones in life. The most recent of which is the birth of my first grandchild, an event which has been both wonderful and emotional at the same time. It is the start of a new phase of life and so the opportunity for reflection is clear, on what has passed as well as what is yet to be. In doing so I realise that I cannot afford to be tied to the past by regret, disappointment, failure or guilt. In fact, I don’t even have to be because I have discovered that Jesus took hold of my life to release me and to grant me immunity from all such negativity and the same can be true for all of us if we will let Him. More than that, His promise to us is that the purpose of God for our lives is so powerful that nothing has the strength or authority to resist it.
So, to all potential dental plan holders let me say this, teeth are important and you should look after yours but your place in your Creator’s divine and loving purpose is more important. Dental plans can be bought for money but access to the fulfilment of your dreams is free because the price has already been paid.