Coffee Breath and All

This morning I went for my routine dental cleaning and check-up.  After dropping Rivers and Leah off at school, I rushed back home to make a cup of coffee for the ride.  As I stirred cream and sugar into the coffee I would be drinking on the way to the dentist I felt a brief flush of freedom.  Let me explain…

Last year when my husband changed jobs, we had to change dentists in accordance with our insurance.  I decided to try a dentist who had opened a new practice only ten minutes from our home.  The facility was new and clean.  The staff friendly.  Good but really that’s expected, right!?  What I didn’t expect on our first visit was for the front desk person to offer my girls a juice box while they waited!  I must have looked at him funny (I mean everyone knows you brush, floss and refrain from the “bad” stuff right before your check-up!) because he just smiled and said, Well they are about to have their teeth cleaned!  As in, what difference does it make?!  We know they probably drink juice boxes!

Want to know something else kind of wacky about our dentist office?  There is a basket on the front counter with treats.  Home made cookies, granola bars, even suckers!  I must admit it feels crazy weird to me–letting my girls leave the dentist with a cookie or sucker in hand!  It feels crazy weird, but real.  Because guess what?  My kids eat cookies.  They have suckers and gooey candy that would get stuck in their teeth sometimes.  And I drink coffee and tea!  What I love, and what kind of hit me this morning as I stirred in my cream and sugar, is how at this particular dentist office I don’t have to pretend otherwise.

So, coffee in hand, I sat down in the waiting room with Leighton in her stroller beside me.  When he saw me, the office manager said, Good morning Mrs. Dorsey.  Would you like something to drink?  Some coffee?  I smiled and said, No, thanks!  I brought my own!  And this is the best dentist office ever!

I can’t help but think the reason I love this dentist office isn’t because they are encouraging me or my kids to eat unhealthy treats or drink stain-inflicting beverages.  It’s because I don’t have to pretend I don’t.  And can I just say how much I appreciate and treasure not having to pretend?  How much I am drawn to “no-spin” people and places?

Kind of like my church.  It’s not perfect but I believe it’s fairly safe to say it’s a “no-spin” zone.  I don’t have to spin a web to measure up.  I don’t have to spin in circles to feel loved, admired or respected.  I don’t have to spin truth about my life or what I’m going through to be encouraged by others.  I don’t feel like I need to pretend I don’t drink the coffee or have the cookies to be welcomed.  I don’t feel like I need to “spin” my reality to impress anyone else.  For me, that is powerful.  And freeing.

Honestly, I know my profound appreciation for the freedom in a no-spin zone has come out of my many spinning experiences.  Spinning makes you tired eventually and one of two things happens.  Either you give up and your heart drifts away or you collapse at His feet.  With a faint smile as I type I can share that the feet of Jesus is the ultimate no-spin zone.  Incredible.  Coffee in hand, cookie crumbs on my shirt and He’s genuinely smiling.  No big deal, just glad you’re here.  We’ll get you all cleaned up and rested as I lift your burden.  You’ll leave my presence with a gleam and a sparkle not because you spun yourself into gold, but because you’ve been  washed in the blood of the Lamb.

I love Dental Oasis!  No spin!  And because there is no spin I’m not afraid to go.  And today I was thinking it’s the same with Jesus…no spin, no pretense.  So I don’t have to be afraid to go to Him, either.  Coffee breath and all.  He’s still happy to see me.  Looks forward to hearing my heart and helping me to hear His.  Jesus makes it safe to open wide the doors of my life so He can get to work filling the soul cavities created by my tiresome spin.



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