by Adam Kronberger / Superintendent
I think I have invented a brand new career: “Substitute Dental Patients!” I am not volunteering myself to enter this exciting new field, but rather am recruiting others to sign up soon. I don’t have the logistics confirmed yet, but the main idea is to provide a substitute for all major dental appointments. Rather than undergoing the uncomfortable process of dental reconstruction yourself, a willing substitute will gladly take your place. Through a yet-to-be-discovered process, your mouth will be healed and you don’t even have to enter the dental chair!
Jesus gets pretty excited about sharing His amazing Father with us. He even gives us the roadmap: “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God” (Matthew 5:8). For some of us, that statement may seem a bit backwards. Shouldn’t we go see God so we can become pure in heart? You see, the Father is equally excited about sharing His amazing Son with us. In vs. 3-7, we learn about the our responsibility in developing a pure heart. As we become poor in Spirit, we surrender our will to the creator and center of the universe. Those who mourn over their sin begin to recognize a need to be saved from it. A person who becomes meek begins to realize that coming under God’s full authority releases immeasurable power in their lives. We begin to hunger and thirst for something better through a new “right-ness” with God. As we seek forgiveness in our lives, we extend mercy to others.
And just as we are willing and ready to see God, Jesus says we need to be pure in heart. It’s kind of like going through all the steps to go to the dentist, and your substitute dental patient doesn’t show up! Fortunately for us, Jesus is our substitute sacrifice providing the ultimate purity for our heart allowing us to truly see God and experience His presence, awesomeness, and grace firsthand. God is the one who ultimately purifies our heart through His son Jesus. Paul tells Timothy to demonstrate “love that issues from a pure heart, and a good conscience, and a sincere faith” (I Timothy 1:5). It is a sincere faith that genuinely pursues the Father through the Son as outlined through the Beatitudes in Matthew 5.
I doubt the new “Substitute Dental Patient” career space will be showcased soon on a Shark Tank episode, but one can dream. But perhaps the next time you find yourself or your child at the dentist, take a moment to remember how Jesus was our substitute for the penalty of death our sins deserve. If a “Substitute Dental Patient” did exist, we might do everything in our power to hire them, especially if they were free. The blood of Jesus is absolutely free, and He wants us to see God daily. Just as daily brushing and flossing keeps a healthy mouth, being in His Word regularly maintains a grateful, healthy, and pure heart.
– Adam Kronberger / Superintendent