Broken Teeth

Theo has started losing his “baby” teeth. I find the whole process a little traumatic… for me. First, the teeth begin to wriggle and become loose, and as time progresses, you can see the gums recede a little more, making future extraction easier. Last week, the sequence came to a head; his permanent teeth were beginning to push his deciduous teeth out of the way, stretching the nerve and causing him some discomfort. The “toothlings” needed to come out. Thankfully, his fantastic mom came to the rescue and plucked the temporary biters from their impermanent location.
Theo was immediately proud of his new toothless smile. For him, it was a marker of maturity and growing older. Most of his friends had already lost some of their teeth, and he was anticipating the day when he could show them that he, too, was in that prestigious club. We didn’t anticipate how this event would affect his youngest brother, Milo. As soon as Milo saw the vacant tooth cavity, he screamed, “I don’t like broken teeth!” When he first saw the hole where the tooth had been, it had not finished bleeding yet… it was a disturbing sight. He squealed and ran away, causing his older brother to chase him around the house.
Under most circumstances, we are not supposed to lose teeth. It is ordinarily traumatic. We usually wouldn’t promote ripping your teeth out to demonstrate your maturity. If you encountered a person tugging on their incisors and claiming to be older because of it, you would consider them foolish. However, we celebrate this stage when we know that removing temporary teeth is healthy and a natural byproduct of aging. We approve because better; newer teeth are coming in to replace the “baby” teeth—a more permanent solution to what previously existed.
2 Corinthians 5:14-17 – “For the love of Christ controls us, having concluded this, that one died for all, therefore all died; 15 and He died for all, so that those who live would no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died and rose on their behalf. 16 Therefore from now on we recognize no one by the flesh; even though we have known Christ by the flesh, yet now we know Him in this way no longer. 17 Therefore if anyone is in Christ, this person is a new creation; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.”
There are a lot of Christ-followers that are still living for themselves. They hold on to the life formerly there, never accepting being a new creation. It is like inserting your deciduous teeth into your mouth because you want to enjoy your food more. You can’t grow older and hold onto your youth; our youth is intended to be momentary; we are meant to grow older; it is a part of God’s perfect design for our lives. Life after Christ is transformative; it is better, and you become a new creation. Let us not go back to the days before our new life. “The old has gone the new has come”, so don’t be upset by your old broken teeth.

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