Tuesday, February 17, 2009
God doesn't give us cavities
They always say, "Out of the mouths of babes...." and Friday night, my son's honest moment with God helped me have one of my own. Grant, our four year old, seemed to have found every reason under the sun to NOT go to sleep that night. His toes were itchy. His pillow was turned on the wrong side. He was too hot. He was too cold. He needed to potty. By the time that he came to tell me he had forgotten to brush his teeth, I was way beyond feeling compassionate. I told him he could brush them tomorrow (knowing he had at least rinsed his mouth with the TWO drinks he had already gotten up to ask for). He snuggled back into bed and began his little prayers AGAIN. We follow a simple "recipe" for bedtime prayers. I say, "Tell God why you love Him," and Grant usually says something like, "I love you because you gave me a cool pirate room," or, "I love you because you make me strong and healthy." But on this night, clearly irritated that I would not start the tooth-brushing ritual at this time of night, he prayed, "God, I love you because you give me cavities. Thanks a lot!" Sound familiar? I, for one, have given God credit for plenty of my mistakes, feeble attempts, and missed opportunities, even when the blame should have landed squarely on me. Of course, I explained that God doesn't cause cavities as retribution for mothers who prevent tooth-brushing (I am sounding less perfect by the minute!). Cavities come when we don't do what we know we should on a regular basis. That seemed enough to satisfy his tender little heart. At bedtime, after we tell God why we love Him, we go on to say what we're sorry for, what we're thankful for, and what we need His help with. So Grant finished his prayers with, I'm sorry I didn't brush my teeth before bed. I'm thankful I don't have any cavities. I need your help so I don't get any cavities tonight since my Mom won't let me brush my teeth. Amen.