What Am I Grateful For Today… Dr. Driggers

37 You know what happened throughout Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism John preached.38 You know about Jesus of Nazareth, whom God anointed with the Holy Spirit and endowed with power. Jesus traveled around doing good and healing everyone oppressed by the devil because God was with him.39 We are witnesses of everything he did, both in Judea and in Jerusalem (Acts 10:37-39a, Common English Bible).

I cannot begin to tell you just how much I hate going to the dentist. As a teenager, a senior in high school, I had two teeth broken out. Root canals had to be done. Despite the dentists best efforts, the teeth never became numb. The most excruciating pain I have ever been through was the end result. To make matters worse, the crowns put on the teeth didn’t last six months and had to be replaced.

When I was in the Navy, they insisted we go to the dentist regularly. I once went when we were at sea. That resulted only on another reason to dislike going to the dentists.

After the Navy, nothing particularly bad happened except 1) I was already ruined and 2) I was going to face medieval torture and pay for the privilege.

Did I mention, I hate going to the dentist? I avoid going like the plague. I have a long history of skipping over the times I should have gone to the dentist for preventive care. Sometimes it was because of expense. Sometimes it was just because I didn’t want to go. When I did go, the deep cleaning necessary resulted in yet new reasons for not wanting to go to the dentist.

At one of my last visits to the dentist I was told those old crowns from the broken teeth so long ago, was causing some problems with the corresponding lower teeth. Eventually, I was told, root canals would be necessary.

About six weeks ago, I started having tooth pain in one of those lower teeth. I made an appointment to see Dr. Driggers. He did a root canal and started me on the road to both upper and lower partials.

Yesterday I had five teeth pulled. Well, three teeth and two crowns that had far outlived their life expectancy.

Knowing this day was coming, I stressed about the day. I was so uncomfortable with even the idea of going to the dentist and even more so with having teeth pulled. Since losing my baby teeth I have never had a tooth pulled.

When Dr. Driggers began his work today, he immediately numbed my mouth. At no time while he was working did I feel real pain. I felt pressure, I felt mild pain. I never felt the kind of pain I felt back when I was a teenager. I am grateful for that.

As I write, I am experiencing some level of pain but I expected as much. Without question, Tylenol helps. When I finish my writing, that is next on my list.

I believe healing comes from God and doctors, including dentists are part of that healing. I think Luke makes that pretty clear in our lesson today.

I am grateful for Dr. Driggers, for his knowledge, his experience and his patience with a big baby who would rather have been just about anywhere other than his chair. Thank you Dr. Driggers.

That is what I am grateful for today. What about you? For what are you grateful. Write it down in your journal. Take a few minutes to share that with someone who needs to hear something from God.

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

With Joy and Thankfulness,

Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved


Spirita Spiro (Esperanza for "Spirit's Breath) is rather new in my life. But the blog is not. I began writing a blog several years ago. It lived under the title, "The Pastor Ponders." Over the years I have tried several different names and "The Pastor Ponders" always seemed to fit best. I am trying again with Spirita Spiro. For 27 years I was a full-time pastor in the United Methodist Church. This year, August 2018, I semi-retired (I can't actually retire quite yet) and began teaching social studies. It is something I have always wanted to do and if I was going to do this, I needed to make it sooner rather than later. So, I made the move. I thought with the career change there also needed to be a name change to the blog and other things, such as spiritual direction. Spirita Spiro is my attempt to share some of my thoughts. I often share what I am thinking with my dog "Bishop," but he keeps his thoughts to himself. He will even go to sleep sometimes while I am sharing my thoughts with him. The truth is, if it doesn't involve getting his ears scratched, his belly rubbed or some kind of treat, he really doesn't care. I will say this for him, he never argues with me or tells me I am wrong. So, I decided to share some of my thoughts with whoever might come across this blog in their ramblings around the Internet. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 27 years as a full-time United Methodist pastor. Most recently I served as pastor of First United Methodist Church in Sweeny, Texas. I have also served United Methodist congregations throughout East Texas including rural Madison County (Elwood UMC), Lovelady (First UMC) and Kennard (Center Hill UMC), Canton (First UMC), rural Smith County (Mt. Sylvan UMC and Union Chapel UMC), Grapeland (First UMC), Tyler (Pleasant Retreat UMC), Santa Fe (Aldersgate UMC), Freeport (First UMC) and Oyster Creek (Oyster Creek UMC), Diboll (First UMC), and now Sweeny (First UMC). My wife Cindy and I have been married for over 40 years. We have two grown sons. Wayne and his wife Nikki and all our grandsons (Kaleb, Noah, and Jaxon) live in Southern California. Christopher and his wife Morgan and both our granddaughters (Jenna and Natalie) live in Tyler Texas. I enjoy preaching and all aspects of preaching from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading, playing the guitar as well as a bit of drawing. I have spent quite a bit of time over the past two years working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I sing bass with a local barbershop chorus called The Coastalaires. I have also recently begun doing a little wood carving. I also enjoy playing with Bishop, something he likes a great deal better than listening to my thoughts. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, specializing in Microcomputers from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, Texas, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. When I was a student at Carolina, the school was in Iron Station North Carolina. They have since relocated to Manassas Virginia (Yeah, go figure, a school named Carolina geographically in Virginia). This blog is mostly devotional writing, but there are other things here too. Just about every week I will either post my sermon manuscript or a video of the worship service. On occasion, I will post something I see in society. Occasionally I write a short story, a poem, or a song and will post it here too. I will say this, my motivations for writing this blog are really selfish. I write it to get what I am thinking out of my head and onto something a bit more permanent. They say, after all, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. And, should you desire, you can one-up Bishop and actually tell me what you think. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. With Joy and Thankfulness, Keith Sweeny, Texas May 2018

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