I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you. .... Ezekiel 36:26a
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:
The salvation story of Jesus Christ reaches around the world. So that the readers of our Daily Devotion may see the power of the Savior on a global scale, we have asked the volunteers of our International Ministry Centers to write our Friday devotions. We pray that the Spirit may touch your day through their words.
In Christ, I remain, His servant and yours,
Kenneth R. Klaus
Speaker Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour
This generation has found it very hard to live.
Even many church members are beset by depression. Why is that? It is because they are living with a set of worldly values. As a result they have problems. Those problems include disappointments and disagreements, an unfulfilled desire for possessions, and a fear of the unknown future.
That is not the way we believers are to live. Because of Jesus Christ and the freedom He gives, we believers no longer have to be governed by the values of the world. Indeed, we who have been redeemed by the Savior should have an ever-growing desire to live in a way that is God-pleasing.
That is a lesson which is taught in the Old Testament book of Ezekiel. That prophet shared how, by the Holy Spirit's power, dry bones that looked and were dead ... had been revived.
Today we know that when the Holy Spirit enters a dead heart, it is revived to lead a new life. In the Old Testament, by the power of God, a dead nation was rescued. Today we remember that even as the Lord can revive a dead nation, He can also resuscitate a dead soul. That is what Scripture is telling us when it says: "I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh" (Ezekiel 36:26).
The Holy Spirit gives us a new heart.
When the Holy Spirit is with us, our heart of stone can be transformed into a new heart and make us new people. Even those who had once been sinking into a sea of endless despair find, that in Jesus, they are given boundless hope. This is God's promise. It is His history. It is His power.
The question is do you believe it? Too many Christians still find it impossible to have a bright future. They, like many in the world, doubt the Holy Spirit can transform their lives.
If you are one of them, please believe me when I say He can. New life will be given as the Holy Spirit changes despair to hope. Remember how hope was given to the disciples when Jesus rose from the dead? Think upon the promises He made before He ascended into heaven.
That day He said He would be with us and reach us through the Holy Spirit.
By Jesus' promise and our own experience, we know the Holy Spirit has come. Because that is true I can confidently encourage you to believe in Jesus. Believe the Lord's promises, and believe He can dispel your despair and replace it with hope. When that happens, and it will, He can use you to reach others with the joy that comes to all who are given faith in the Redeemer.
THE PRAYER: Lord, open our minds and hearts and give us Your Holy Spirit. May He help us to be Your holy people. In Jesus' Name I ask it. Amen.
Biography of Author: Today's international devotion was written by Lutheran Hour Ministries' friend and co-worker Pastor Young Suk Jin. During his studies to be an aeronautical engineer, Pastor Jin joined the army. While in military service he met a pastor who so touched him he decided to be a pastor, too. At the age of 27, Pastor Jin entered seminary. Today, he is in charge of So-meon Church in Incheon, Korea. The goal of the church is to "Let all the people lead to Jesus Christ." In Korea LHM sponsors theater and music performances such as "Jazz and Vespers," which give the general public a chance to connect with Christians and local congregations. Additionally, LHM ministers to local Koreans through its website, newsletter, and Korean-language videos and books.
To learn more about our International Ministries, click here or visit www.lhmint.org.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries