My Heart Was Not In It (Proverbs 22:6)

“Is there anything else to do? I developed and mounted the x-rays, completed the filings, and called the patients to remind them of their appointments tomorrow.”

The office manager looked at me and nodded. “Good job. Your father should be very proud of you!”

I smiled and thanked her. During my summer and Christmas vacations in high school and college, I worked in my father’s dental office. Ostensibly, it was to teach me real world responsibilities but I knew he also wanted me to see what he did so that I hopefully become interested in dentistry and become a dentist like him and eventually take over his practice. 

Despite learning many aspects of dentistry, I could not get myself interested in looking at festering cavities and scraping plaque from yellowed incisors. When I finally had the courage to tell my father I was not interested in following in his footsteps, he was understandably disappointed but sensed that my heart was not in it. 

I did not become a dentist but my father taught me much more valuable lessons. He modeled for me how a compassionate health care provider should care for their patients. He honed my organizational skills to learn to multitask in a busy office. Years later, as a physician, I was grateful that I had an opportunity to thank him for what I learned in his office. 

Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.

Proverbs 22:6 (NKJV)

My own children will not follow in my footsteps to become a physician and I am perfectly content with this. If their heart is not in this, I do not want to force a decision upon them. It is far more important that they learn what it means to be a humble person who places God first in everything they do. From my father, I learned how to become a better physician and person. From my Heavenly Father, I learned I should always love and trust the Lord and seek His will in my life.


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2 thoughts on “My Heart Was Not In It (Proverbs 22:6)

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