Clenching (Psalms 139:23-24)

“I think I cracked my tooth!”

I told my wife, who is a dentist, that I needed to have her examine my upper molars where I could feel a jagged edge with my tongue. Last weekend, she saw me in her office and was surprised by what she found. 

“You have very bad cracks on both of your upper molars. Looks like it is from grinding your teeth. Are you still wearing your mouth guard?”

I was confused. “Yes, you made me the mouth guard, you know I wear it every night when I sleep.”

“Yes, but what about during the day?”

“I can’t wear a mouthguard during the day.”

“No, I meant you are probably clenching your teeth during the day and you are unaware that you are doing it.”

“Me? Stressed?” No WAY!” Of course I knew she was probably correct. Even if I was not consciously aware of the clenching, regardless of what I told myself or her, the evidence was there. She cleaned my teeth and did two fillings. The damage was repaired but the behavior that caused it was still there. 

Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me and know my anxious thoughts;

And see if there be any  hurtful way in me, And lead me in the everlasting way.

Psalms 139:23-24 (NASB)

There are so many behaviors that I fail to acknowledge to myself and to God. Some are simply anxious thoughts. Others may degenerate into self-destructive behavior that, like my teeth clenching, can hurt me. Only by coming before God, through faith and belief in His Son, Jesus Christ, and asking Him to reveal these harmful habits, will I be able to allow God to extinguish these behaviors and triumphantly lead me to an everlasting abundant and fulfilled life.

Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.

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