I just met a walking meditation on discipleship.
A leader from a nearby church stopped by to leave some flyers for a benefit concert. He wore one of those masks that keep you from breathing in the germs and meanies from other people. I went to shake his hands and he told he could not do that. His kidney was replaced five months ago and he was just getting his immune system back. He did not want to compromise his system.
He informed me that his immune system was shut down by the doctors so his body would not reject his new kidney. Otherwise, his body would see the new part not as an unwatned intruder, not as a life-giving organ. It would seek to kick it out.
I immediately verbalized, “That is just like what happens when we go through the transformation of being a Christ-follower. What Jesus gives us is new life. Our old man wants to reject it and kick it out unless something is actively done to keep it in place until it is part of us.”
God promises to give his people a heart of flesh for a heart of stone. That heart of flesh is not natural to us, though it is the source of our life. Something must be done to keep us from rejecting what God placed in us. Our need finds its fulfillment in trusting the Lord, soaking in His word, and continuing to choose for Him when our options lead away from Him. Little by little, that new heart comes to be the natural part of us and all that is not aligned with Christ’s heart in us is the stuff we reject.
I thank God for a new heart. I also thank Him for the supplying me with all I need to keep His heart beating in me.