“For I will take you from the nations (Israel), gather you from all the lands and bring you into your own land…Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.” Ezekiel 36: 24 & 26
According to the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, the average human heart beats about 115,000 times a day. That adds up to over 42 million times a year, or over 3 billion times in a lifetime. It’s a pretty phenomenal muscle.
The Word of God speaks a lot about the human heart. But unlike a medical doctor who looks at the muscle, the Bible speaks of the heart on an emotional level – the source of our feelings, dreams and desires. The heart is the heart of who we are as a person. Now, if a person is “good hearted,” we know this to mean having a sense of compassion, integrity and fairness. A “hard hearted” person usually implies a stubbornness or an unwillingness to change. When the Bible refers to the people of Israel as having “hard hearts,” it’s speaking of a hard-heartedness against God. It’s an I want to do what I what, no matter what God says mentality. Does this sounds familiar?
When the prophet Ezekiel spoke to the nation of Israel, they were at a low point. They were enslaved to the most powerful nation at the time and their capital city had been completely obliterated. That’s when God sent Ezekiel with a message of hope. God reminded them that in spite of how far away they had wandered – God saw them. God felt compassion and God would restore them. God had not forgotten them.
Maybe over the years you’ve walked away from God. Maybe you’ve turned your back on HIS way in pursuit of YOUR way. Maybe you’re facing the consequences of bad decisions and mistakes made along the way. Or maybe you’ve done many things right – but it doesn’t seem to be enough. No matter where you find yourself today, God sees you. God loves you. God wants to restore you. He has not forgotten you – and He never will.