I will give you a new heart,
and a new spirit I will put within you.
I will remove the heart of stone …
I will put my spirit within you
so that you walk in my statutes.
You will … be my people, and I will be your God.
— Canticle of Ezekiel 36:26-28
What a beautiful piece by Ezekiel. “I will give you a new heart.” Wow. What does that even mean? What would it be like to have a new heart, given to us by our Creator? What a gift! Then… “spirit”. God keeps saying “I”. Not “I the master of the universe dictates thus and thus!” No, this is an intimate God. Truly a God with us, right here on the ground, making our way with us, sometimes struggling, sometimes breezing through, and a lot in between. This God is putting God’s Spirit within us. God’s very Spirit. Within us. We carry God within us. Another incredible gift.
“I will remove the heart of stone….” Well, who else could? And how could we carry God’s Spirit and have a heart of stone anyway? It doesn’t seem like it would be possible. So the stone heart is removed and a new heart is given. Do you see the freedom in that? Unlimited love. That’s what the new heart is. We need to accept it, this gift. Gift upon gift.
“So that you walk in my statutes.” Statutes, that’s what was important then. They were a nomadic people, they needed structure, rules, statutes. We have all that. It’s a given. So what would Ezekiel say today instead of “statutes “? What do you think?
I think “path”. Today, we need not more statues, but a way, a path to walk, with God’s Spirit within. A way through this life.
“You will be my people, and I will be your God.” Wow. What a deal. How did we get so fortunate to have a personal, intimate, God-with-us? God created us for this partnership. God’s unbounded love needed to flow into something. It’s to be shared. That’s us, and all of creation. We share God, with God. I don’t know about you, but to me that’s pretty amazing.