Today’s Scripture Reading: Ezekiel 10:1 through Ezekiel 13:23
Do you ever feel like a “hard hearted” man or woman?
At times I do. If I’m not careful I can become calloused to the pain of people. From what I’ve observed, I’m not alone. Everywhere you turn you see people who seem to be oblivious to the hurting in the world.
- Our own personal needs seem to be more than we can handle
- The needs of the world are so big we feel paralyzed
- 24 hours news had fed us a steady diet of tragedy, disaster, and violence until we’ve reached the point where things that would have kept us awake at night ten years ago, now just cause just to say, “That’s sad,” and change the channel.
In today’s reading the Prophet Ezekiel was prophesying to the Israelites who were exiled to Babylon. God was concerned about the hardness of their hearts. Many Bible teachers believe that America is a type of Babylon:
I, the Sovereign Lord, will gather you back from the nations where you have been scattered, and I will give you the land of Israel once again.
When the people return to their homeland, they will remove every trace of their vile images and detestable idols. And I will give them singleness of heart and put a new spirit within them. I will take away their stony, stubborn heart and give them a tender, responsive heart, so they will obey my decrees and regulations. Then they will truly be my people, and I will be their God. Ezekiel 11:17-20 (emphasis mine)
Babylonian culture was very different from Jewish culture. Idol worship and “me” worship was the norm. God knew the day-to-day self-absorption and over-stimulation were affecting His people. He knew they were going to need a “heart transplant” after their time in Babylon.
For today’s Christians it takes a conscious effort to live in this modern-day Babylon and not succumb to the trappings of this culture, we must have a daily heart transplant.
How can we receive this new heart?
Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. –Romans 12:2
A spiritual heart transplant= a Heart Transformed into the likeness of Christ
When we allow the Holy Spirit to transform us into the likeness of Christ we will have a heart that is…
- Wholly devoted to Jesus
- Full of the Spirit of God
- Has no trace of hardness or stubbornness
- Tender to the things of God and the hurting and lost
- Obedient to the voice of God
We are called to be world-changers (Matthew 28:16-20), but we have to have the heart for it!
Heavenly Father, I ask you to give me a heart transplant. Give me a new heart that hurts for the things You hurt for; give me compassion and energy to live a life that is a light in the darkness of “Babylon.”
© 2012 Dianne GuthmullerTomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Ezekiel 14:1 through16:63