Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Invisalign Braces and Free Will

I am one hour in to my first set of invisalign braces.

I now have many more things to offer up this Lent. No coffee – except with meals when the braces come off. No soda either. Nothing with color – unless I want a red, or brown, or orange smile. No eating with the braces on either.

Water. I can drink water. And I can eat and drink whatever I want – but only at meal time when the braces come off.

As they said in the orthodontist office: This is a good time to start a diet. So there is a bright side.

They say the good thing about invisalign is that you can take them out. They say the bad thing about invisalign is that you can take them out.

Still, I think invisalign is a good choice for me. Perhaps you should ask me later – after my teeth start hurting – because they say they will hurt. They say I will want to take them out. But they said I should not give in to that desire.

It’s kind of like the freedom God gives us. The good thing about this faith is that God has given us the choice to love him or to walk away. The good thing about God's gift of grace is it depends on our free will to receive it and to walk in it. The bad thing about God's gift of grace is that it depends on our free will to abandon it and to let it fade away completely.

There will be times we will feel like throwing off the mantle of holiness. But we should not give in to that desire.

Like the invisalign braces, my faith may not be obvious at first glance. This pursuit of holiness is usually a quiet, hidden process.

But those who are closest to us know it’s happening. They are aware of the changes, and eventually others will notice as well.

So we submit to the pain required in spiritual change. We do not throw off the mantle when it becomes a little difficult.

And when we need some assistance, we know where to go. The Eucharist. The waters of Baptism. The confessional.

We turn to Christ.



  1. Hello, Denise,
    I was reading my U.P. Catholic paper (Marquette, Michigan) for March 21st, and read and really like your article, "It's time to return home and claim our heritage" and style of writing. It certainly appealed to me. By going on your website I read quite a few of your other articles, and also liked them. It's so nice we have a down-to-earth Catholic writer like you, sharing in a way that's easy to relate. Blessing, Virginia Minor

  2. God bless you for writing this article! Clearly, God was trying to talk to me through you. A second ago, I said a prayer because I was struggling with self-discipline (specifically overeating) and was fully aware that God had given me the grace I requested, but I did not want to walk into his grace.. I did not want to walk away from the sin. I googled "walking away from grace" right after praying again and was searching for some good, Catholic motivation on the issue to help me just re-orient myself and avoid wasting the precious grace God gave me.
    My jaw dropped to the floor as I read your blog. For one, it's well said and a great analogy. Secondly, I am also using invisalign and can totally relate. Thirdly, I am a dentist LOL. It probably was not a coincidence that I came across this site. **Puts away the cookies, reaches for tooth brush and trays****.
    I look forward to navigating through your blog. Thanks again! You just led someone towards grace :0)

  3. I am so humbled that you would share these moments of grace with me! What an amazing God we serve - who uses every little thing to help us along. Yes, He even uses orthodontia. Please know that your comments have blessed me!