Lazarus and the Tooth by Julie Arduini

Our daughter has had the same set of braces for four years and counting. The orthodontist has tried to make light of our long term relationship by joking he will most likely be in Hannah’s future wedding because they have known each other so long. As you can imagine, we aren’t ready to laugh just yet.

I knew the process would take longer than most because of what I’ve read about hypothyroidism and albright hereditary osteodystrophy (pseudohypoparathyroidism). Especially in Hannah, every system runs slow in her. Every. Right down to teeth.

Three years ago she needed oral surgery to bring a tooth down and it was a horrific experience. The place worked like a factory, ushering recovering patients out before they even knew where they were. Hannah wasn’t ready to leave, and they gave her opioids to recover. It took me hours before I realized all her vomiting was because the meds were too severe for her.

Fast forward and that tooth still hasn’t moved down as much as it should have. The ortho noted if that tooth doesn’t move soon, she will need another surgery for an implant.

With all she’s been through, surgery is the LAST thing she wants. We’ve been praying and praying for this tooth to move. We believe God’s Word contains promises, not cute little stories. We’ve been reciting Psalm 37:4 as His promise for her.

“Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desire of your heart.”

Psalm 37:4

Hannah knows Jesus isn’t her genie. She’s pressing in faith believing He alone can move that tooth, and she would be sure to tell the world He’s the One who moved it.

Today she had a follow-up, one the orthodontist defined as “D-Day.” Either the tooth would move or it was time to call the oral surgeon. Again. Last night I shared with her the appointment was upcoming and there were options to consider.

  1. The tooth moved supernaturally.
  2. He forgot it was “D-Day” and doesn’t say anything.
  3. He schedules the surgery.

I shared that hours before I was doing my Bible reading and I landed in John 11. Reading about Lazarus and his resurrection reminded me of Hannah and her tooth. It would be so easy for Jesus to move that tooth sooner. But perhaps His plan is to move it later, maybe even as late as a surgery day.

Well, the appointment is over and Hannah marched in there asking me to wait in the car. We prayed it through and she felt comfortable going in without me. She returned 30 minutes later done with the appointment.

The results? A mix of 2 and 3. He didn’t make the tooth the focus of the appointment, but there was some discussion. He said her teeth still need band work for alignment so nothing needs to be done right now aside from that. However, when the teeth are aligned, he announced it would be time to call the dentist/surgeon.

Hannah was pleased. She felt this meant she had more time to pray and decree. Her plan is to stand on Psalm 37:4, declare in faith the tooth has moved and give Him thanks, and to cover her in acceleration and peace as she waits. If He answers differently, she recalled Lazarus. Jesus might show up “four days late” and offer a plan that moves His Kingdom forward in a way moving that tooth now would not.

Faith is believing in what we can’t see. We don’t know how this tooth process is going to go, but we know God is faithful. Whatever happens, it will be His best plan for her. And we trust Him.

Having a child with chronic health issues much of her life is hard, especially when she’s prayed and prayed for much to change and it hasn’t. At least not yet. But I love how she knows He cares and wants what’s best for her.

I hope if you’re in a waiting season you know this too.

About juliearduini

Julie Arduini loves to encourage readers to find freedom in Christ by surrendering the good, the bad, and ---maybe one day---the chocolate. She’s the author of the new contemporary romance series SURRENDERING HEARTS (Anchored Hearts, Repairing Hearts, +four more.) Her other romance series is SURRENDERING TIME (Entrusted, Entangled, Engaged.) She also co-wrote a YA series with her daughter, SURRENDERING STINKIN’ THINKIN’ (You’re Beautiful, You’re Amazing, You’re Brilliant.) Her stand-alone romances include MATCH MADE IN HEAVEN and RESTORING CHRISTMAS. Julie maintains a blog at and participates in the team blog Christians Read. She resides in Ohio with her husband and two children. Learn more by visiting her at
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1 Response to Lazarus and the Tooth by Julie Arduini

  1. Judy says:

    Please tell Hannah that her faith may not have moved that tooth yet, but it has helped me better understand praying in faith without expecting God to be a genie. I needed this. Praying for her.


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