Second, six hours and 17 minutes into my trip north (yes I know exactly when it happened!), I was merrily and happily eating a "Cherry Pie" Lara bar (ingredient list: dates, almonds, unsweetened cherries), when an explosion went off in my mouth. At least, that's what it felt like. I reached into my mouth and pulled out 25% of the porcelein cover of the only crown I have in my mouth - let me rephrase that, the only crown I had in my mouth. Clearly, something in that bar didn't make it onto the ingredient list.
I looked through my windshield, raised my eyes towards the heavens, and said, "Really, Lord? Is this how we are going to start this trip?"
Here's where the gratitude kicked in.
There was no pain. I expected to be blinded by pain. I figured that my week of silence and prayer had just been transformed into a week of fasting, silence, and prayer. But there was no pain whatsoever. Not for one moment in the car, not for one moment during the week I was away. The only time it bothered me was on the return trip yesterday afternoon; as I was making the steep descent from the mountains of Virginia into North Carolina, I felt pressure in that area. I was less than three hours from home, so I was willing to endure the pain for the remainder of the trip because of my next reason for gratitude.
We have both dental insurance and an excellent dentist. I called the dentist and made an appointment to get it fixed before I called my husband and told him what happened. Within five minutes of cracking the crown, I was on the calendar with Dr. Holt. Thanks be to God.
(A few brief asides here - Right after I assessed the damage to my mouth and realized that there wasn't any pain, I began to pray for people who don't have any dental insurance but have both dental problems and pain. Fortunately, as soon as I reached the bottom of the sharp decline yesterday, the pressure subsided, and there was no more pain. When the dental hygienist looked into my mouth this morning, she said, "Oh, wow! You cracked it alright." Not a good start. The dentist peered in and said, "Oooh." Then the two of them began the magical work of recreating dental harmony in my mouth.)
Yes, that's a truck on the pathway. It was loaded with recently chopped wood.
Many more stories to come.
For now, all I can say is, "thank you, thank you, thank you."