Let yourself become open to God and the knowledge that comes from the Word. Ask God for a peace at this time.
Ezekiel 37:1-14 (NRSV)
The hand of the LORD came upon me, and he brought me out by the spirit of the LORD and set me down in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. He led me all around them; there were very many lying in the valley, and they were very dry. He said to me, “Mortal, can these bones live?” I answered, “O Lord GOD, you know.” Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones, and say to them: O dry bones, hear the word of the LORD. Thus says the Lord GOD to these bones: I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. I will lay sinews on you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live; and you shall know that I am the LORD.”
So I prophesied as I had been commanded; and as I prophesied, suddenly there was a noise, a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone. I looked, and there were sinews on them, and flesh had come upon them, and skin had covered them; but there was no breath in them. Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, mortal, and say to the breath: Thus says the Lord GOD: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live.” I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and stood on their feet, a vast multitude.
Then he said to me, “Mortal, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They say, ‘Our bones are dried up, and our hope is lost; we are cut off completely.’ Therefore prophesy, and say to them, Thus says the Lord GOD: I am going to open your graves, and bring you up from your graves, O my people; and I will bring you back to the land of Israel. And you shall know that I am the LORD, when I open your graves, and bring you up from your graves, O my people. I will put my spirit within you, and you shall live, and I will place you on your own soil; then you shall know that I, the LORD, have spoken and will act, says the LORD.”
Perhaps the most familiar story recorded in the Book of Ezekiel is the one about the Valley of Dry Bones. As a child, I learned the traditional spiritual song, “Dem Dry Bones.” I thought it was amazing how “dem” bones connected to each other, but I missed the real point of the song—that God is willing and able to restore our dry bones.
The words God gave to Ezekiel and the song they inspired address the dry bones of slavery and oppression, but dry bones are not limited to these twin evils. Our dry bones could be shattered or abandoned hopes and dreams; they could be a broken relationship or the loss of a loved one to death; they could be a financial struggle or an issue at school; they could be an illness or aging; they could be emotional or spiritual in nature. Whatever our particular dry bones are, we can experience restoration through the power of God’s Holy Spirit. The Lord says, “…I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live” (verse 5). We might think this promise is only applicable to other people because our dry bones are so dehydrated that not even God can restore them. When such thoughts occur, we need to remember God’s question to Abraham, “Is anything too wonderful for the Lord?” (Genesis 18:14). Other translations use the word hard instead of wonderful, asking “Is anything too hard for the Lord?” The answer is no; God is willing and able to restore our dry bones.
Holy and gracious God, we praise you for your willingness and ability to restore our dry bones. We praise you because absolutely nothing is too hard for you. Not only do we praise you, but we trust you to restore our dry bones to new life through the power of your Holy Spirit. Amen.
Go with God.