Have you ever felt like the work you have been called to do is so small and so insignificant that it really does not matter?

It was about two years ago when I sent a text to a friend, it simply read, “please pray for teeth, would explain later.”  I had just spent sometime with my friend Tony who just happened to be a homeless man.  I asked him if he could have anything in that moment, what would it be and he replied with a toothless grin, “teeth.” I left our visit that day with a promise to pray for teeth.  He said that besides all the pain of the teeth going bad the thought of being looked at like someone less hurt him deeply.  He had no money for food let alone for dental care.  

I had never thought much about dental care for the down and out.  Sandwiches, sleeping bags and blankets were the obvious.  Nevertheless, the truth is, to help people get back on their feet they need help finding confidence.  A toothless smile as vulnerable and innocent as it can seem does not send the message of confidence to someone applying for a job, looking for housing or even in engaging in new friendships.

Here I am two years later, connecting with a local outreach program and the director shared with me there newest project.  In the corner of the facility, a two-room office, dental office that is for those in transition working the program, I almost started to cry.  “Of course Lord”, is all I thought.  I felt the tears welling up in my eyes as I thought about my prayer request in the form of a text, which seemed more like a decade ago.

Sometimes I feel like the work I have been called to do is so small and so insignificant.  However, days like these, when I continue to run the race set before me, I get glimpse into the greatness of God and watch how He truly does answer prayers.

Teeth, a simple but profound answer to my prayers, thank you Lord!


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