Faith and money. Suggesting principles for integrating the two can be both challenging and easily misunderstood. When it comes to one’s personal approach to these matters, devout and studious believers are all over the map as to what the Bible teaches. However, we can all agree, “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows” (1 Timothy 6:10, NKJV).
Let's celebrate networking. As a young Christian, I yearned for a community of Christian professionals. The Lord had provided Christian fellowship within the dental school. We encouraged each other with prayers and took turns on mission endeavors. There was easy access to meeting times and meeting rooms. CMDA was active and supportive. Yet, this fellowship was sheltered from non-professional challenges. We all have different comfort zones with grace and tact, but here are a few observations that may benefit those who feel awkward in their transition out of the professional schools and begin their community practices.
Before I started dental school, my commute to New Orleans for graduate school increased by 45 minutes up to 1.5 hours one way. While continuing to make this long commute during dental school every morning, I typically listen to some variation of the following: podcasts by Ravi Zacharias (or members of his team), sermons, books by C.S. Lewis or other Christian authors, an audio Bible, worship music or apologetic debates (I love apologetics). My long commute has always been a great time of fellowship with the Lord. However, last semester a lingering issue began. Listening to those Christ-centered resources left me with a rapidly growing level of discontent. As God revealed, the problem was a neglected desire to read my Bible. Therefore, for this blog post, that is the message: we need to read God’s Word.
Our behavior represents Jesus. Why not be as consistent as possible to live the life that God wants us to live? After all, it is for our benefit.
An area of prayer that I am guilty of forgetting to participate in is crying out for more workers for the harvest. I participate in discussions about injustices in healthcare and the need for more dentists, particularly Christian dentists, but I don’t ask the Lord to raise these people up. God is able to do anything, but He wants to use us, His people, to accomplish His plan so His creation can show His glory. He also tells us to ask for things because He’s a good Father who loves His children.
Just as every practice will one day transition, so also every season of leadership in which God has placed us will one day come to an end. When it does, how will your life’s story be written? What legacy will you leave?
“I like this song” were the starting words of what turned into a 10-minute conversation about Jesus.
God has given each of us a purpose in life. Starting with the big picture, it is to love God with all our heart, mind, soul and strength. And secondly, we are to love our neighbor as ourselves.
No believer in Christ would deny that we are called to serve the poor. Whether we actually do it or not is another matter. There are many reasons why we should, so what are the reasons why we don’t? Time? Lack of resources? Lack of desire? Are any of those good enough reasons not to obey the Lord’s command on our lives?
Time for an end-of-year checkup. Business will perk up just after the New Year. By March, the restorative work found from increased January and February hygiene appointments will begin to fill the schedule with the promise of a better year. But from my experience, November and December are the months when practice owners want to talk to a consultant like myself. It’s a time when perhaps they are close enough to the end of the year to see that the numbers aren’t adding up like they had hoped.