Chasing the Wind
March 6, 2019
by Jennifer Wade, DDS
In dental school, several of my instructors would mention their theory of why the suicide rate among dentists was so high, sometimes as a joke or some for serious reasons. One professor’s theory made the most sense to me: Work itself can become very redundant and most restorations eventually fail. You can feel like you’ve worked so hard to bring someone’s mouth into health and restore their smile, but if they don’t take care of their mouth, all of your hard work can fall apart. He also mentioned that if you’re in it for the money, that will fail you too. If all you’ve built your life on is your work and your things, then it’s going to be a big disappointment.
Essentially, he was explaining the truth of Ecclesiastes 1:14 from a dentist’s perspective, “I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind” (NIV 1984).
As a naïve dental student and a believer in Jesus Christ, I thought to myself, “This won’t bother me, I’m not doing it for myself, I’m doing this for Jesus!” I have spent all of my working years so far at a Christian community clinic and still find myself “chasing wind.” When I try to listen to my own voice at work, at home, with family or with anything else, instead of the voice of the Good Shepherd, then all of my striving is chasing wind. If I let myself just be busy and forget that every bit of my life is for God’s glory, then all of my work feels so empty. God is so gracious and draws me back to His voice and shows me He can use me even when I’m not listening, though I will be more full of joy when I am listening.
If you feel like you’ve been chasing wind, then take some time to seek the Father’s voice. Practice listening for Him in all the things you do, even at the dental chair, and you’ll be chasing God’s kingdom instead.