DayBreaks for 3/13/17 – Looking at Dead Hearts

DayBreaks for 3/13/17: Looking at Dead Hearts

Ezekiel 36:26 (NIV) – 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.

Some of you are old enough to remember when the first heart transplant took place. It was an amazing feat. The first transplant was performed in 1967 in Cape Town, South Africa by Dr. Christiaan Barnard. The recipient was Louis Washkansky, a fifty three year old grocer with a debilitating heart condition. Unfortunately Mr. Washkansky survived only 18 days after the operation, but I remember when the story broke about the heart transplant. The entire world seemed captivated by this seemingly impossible accomplishment.

The first successful transplant was performed on Dr. Barnard’s third patient, a Jewish dentist named Dr. Philip Blaiberg. He survived for nearly two years.

After his surgery, Dr. Barnard carried Dr. Blaiberg’s old heart in a plastic box and showed it to him. The two men sat on the hospital bed examining the scars and thickening of the dead useless heart.

Dr. Barnard said, “Dr. Blaiberg, do you realize you are the first man in the history of humankind to sit and look at your own dead heart?”

What an amazing story! Of course, today, thanks to modern anti-rejection drugs, people are living much longer after heart transplants than in those early days.

We’re thankful for physicians like Dr. Barnard, but we’re even more thankful that we worship a God who is the only surgeon who can put an entirely new heart in an individual. That is the only heart transplant that really matters. It is when God replaces a heart filled with malice, anger, hatred, envy, guilt and a host of other negative, destructive emotions with a heart filled with love, joy, peace and wholeness.

Do you perhaps need a heart transplant? To you need a new beginning in life? That’s what God offers us – each one of us – every day. Perhaps we all need to sit still for a moment and let God show us our dead heart and cause us to marvel at the new heart that beats within us!

PRAYER: God, the truth is that we all need a heart transplant and so we ask You today to create in us a clean heart that loves the things You love, that hatest the things You hate and that longs to do Your will! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2017 by Galen Dalrymple.

DayBreaks for 12/24/13 – God’s Heart Transplant

DayBreaks for 12/24/13 – God’s Heart Transplant                       

Ezekiel 36:26 (NLT)  And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart.

Today I’m sharing something that Ann Voskamp wrote.  The background: 13-year old Taylor Storch and her family had gone to Colorado for a little skiing. Taylor laughed loud coming down the mountain, but then she fell – right down a straight rocky slant of the earth. Ann continues: “By nightfall, she was gone, slipped off this earth and Home, and her parents, Tara and Todd, were signing papers to give away Taylor’s still-warm heart.

They ended up giving Taylor’s heart to a woman, Patricia Winters, in Arizona whose heart was failing so badly that she couldn’t get off the couch anymore.

When someone called to tell Ann and her family about the accident, Ann wrote: “There’s been ugly sin this week and there’s been dead weary and there’s been more than a few moments I haven’t known how to go on.

“Taylor’s mama had only one request.” I lean against the window sill, head against the cool pane, tell my Mama what Max had said, how he had shown us a photo of Taylor with her mama. How Taylor’s mama had called Patricia Winters and asked her if she could come hear her heart.

“Oh my.” Mama murmurs what only a mama can feel. The clock’s ticking on the wall.

“And Max had told us how Taylor’s mama flew from Dallas to Phoenix and knocked on Patricia Winters’ door and Patricia Winters walked right past the couch and she opened the door and she opened her arms and she welcomed them in. And Taylor’s mama fell into her arms and the two mothers just held each other, Taylor’s heart beating right there next to her weeping Mama’s.

‘And then Patricia Winters reached over and handed Taylor’s Mama a stethoscope.

“And she laid that stethoscope up against Patricia Winters and she could hear it, right there in Patricia as clear as a beckoning bell: Thrum. Thrum.

“Taylor’s mama could hear it loud and long, right there in her ears…Thrum.

“Like a thunder vibrating right through her — Thrum.

“Her daughter’s still-beating heart.

“Oh… I can’t…” Mama chokes out the words. “I can’t even imagine.”

“Can’t imagine. Can’t Believe…  Miracle.

“And then Max had asked us slow and quiet. “What was Taylor’s Mama really hearing?”

“It indwells a different body, but that heart is the heart of her girl…. ” Max said. “And when God hears your heart, that’s what He hears — the still-beating heart of His Son.”

“Your heart can’t forgive the tactless no-so-great Aunt, your heart can’t forgive the words that should never have been said, your heart can’t forgive the remark that was more like a blade and left a mark how many years later. Your heart can’t forgive the step-mother, the side joke, the backhand, the over-the-top family that just gets under your skin.

“Your heart can’t forgive. That’s why He gave you His.

“When you don’t think you can forgive what she’s said about you —-

“When you don’t think you can forget what he’s done to you –

“When it’s His heart beating in you — you can forgive in a heart beat.

“I look up from the sink. The Christmas tree is there by the fireplace — and it’s right there, what all the hard relationships, gatherings, families need at Christmas: the Tree is where God’s grace does heart transplants: God takes broken hearts —- and gives you His.” – Ann Voskamp, A Holy Experience blog

PRAYER: Thank You, Lord Jesus, for not just becoming like us in the Incarnation, but showing us Your heart, and giving us Your heart!  May we hear Your heart beating a little stronger in each of us this Christmas.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2013 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

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