“I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh” Ezekiel 11:19
If you spend any time reading the Old Testament you will find that the Israelites mess up quite a bit. It seems like on every page they are finding some new way to ignore God’s commands, place their trust in worldly things, and succumb to the temptations of greed and pride. Sounds familiar doesn’t it?
One of the messages that God continually gives His people through the prophets is that their problem isn’t their ability to follow the laws, the problem is their hearts. The prophet Jeremiah pulled no punches in his description of human’s hearts when he says, ““The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is? (17:9 NLT)”. You are probably aware of your own heart’s capacity to desire terrible things.
Sometimes it can even feel like your heart is as heavy and as cold as stone.
Good News! One of the promises of new beginnings that we are looking at this week is a beautiful promise written in the book of Ezekiel. God loves new beginnings, and He desires to see us with new and transformed hearts. Since we are so fortunate to live in the time after the New Testament we can read this promise in Ezekiel with the perspective of Jesus in Mind.
It is through Jesus God makes our hearts new and undivided, full of the presence of the Holy Spirit. It is through the redemptive work of Christ that our stone-cold hearts can be recreated into the type of heart God desired for us all along.
So if your heart is feeling a little cold, and a little more stone-like than flesh-like at the start of this year- it is time to turn it over to Jesus. Let him begin the process of making your heart look more like his each and every day.