Sacrificial LoveWhat does it mean for you to carry your cross?
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The Lord your God will change your heart . . . so that you will love Him with all your heart and soul and so you may live! (Deuteronomy 30:6).
Dan Olson is a marathon runner and long-distance cyclist. He’s also a heart transplant recipient. Dan thought his athletic lifestyle would ensure having a healthy body. But at age 38, he was diagnosed with cardiomyopathy— the weakening and thickening of the heart muscle.
Damaged beyond repair, Dan needed a heart transplant. His donor was a 15-year-old car accident victim. Making the decision to generously donate their daughter’s organs in the midst of their tragedy, the teenager’s parents gave Dan a new life. “I think of my donor every day,” says Dan. “And I want to show her family all that their gift has allowed me to do.”
Before we became believers in Jesus, we had spiritual “cardiomyopathy”—the hardening of our heart (Ephesians 4:17). The Great Physician called our condition “a heart of stone” (Ezekiel 36:26 NIV). According to His prognosis, our stony heart was unable and unwilling to respond to God (Ezekiel 11:19). Untreated, we would have been dead, devoid of life (Ephesians 2:1; Colossians 2:13).
But then we received major surgery. We are also heart transplant recipients. This procedure was performed by the divine Surgeon (Deuteronomy 30:6; Colossians 2:11). He said, “I will give you a new heart . . . . I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart. And I will put My Spirit in you so that you will follow My decrees and be careful to obey My regulations” (Ezekiel 36:26). Without this new heart, we could not be a believer in Jesus.
You have received a new heart and a new life! Like Dan, do you think of your Donor every day? May this new heart empower you to “love Him with all your heart and soul and so you may live” (Deuteronomy 30:6).
Read Colossians 2:9 to find out what Jesus did to give you a new heart.
Why did God give you a new heart? How has this heart transplant changed the way you live?
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