Ice cubes are a wonderful invention. Until, that is, they rebelliously band together into a solid, rock-hard block.
At work, our icemaker empties the ice cubes into a freezer bin. Occasionally, the cubes melt slightly and then refreeze into a hard, abstract ice sculpture. Chipping at fused ice cubes—trying to break off two or three for your drink—requires an ice pick, a strong arm, and lots of patience. It’s easier to dump the block of ice in the sink and wait for the icemaker to start dropping new cubes. So that’s what I do.
But there’s an easier way to break up this rock-hard, ice sculpture. Simply turn on the tap. Cold water drills holes in the ice. Brute force is unnecessary. The running water melts the toughest ice block away in minutes.
The Bible speaks of hearts hardened by sin. Sometimes we get discouraged when we pray for a loved one’s salvation or for a Christian whose heart is hard in a certain area. Our emotions tell us, “They’re never going to change. What’s the use of praying?” Despair drains us, washing away our hope. We don’t have the energy to keep praying.
I once prayed for a Christian friend’s hard heart. Suddenly, I stopped. I realized I didn’t believe my own prayers. My faith tank was empty. Stunned, I cried out to God for help, “Lord, I don’t have any faith for this.” Immediately, I saw a mental image of tap water melting ice in a sink. New faith flowed into me as I pictured the hardness in my friend’s heart being melted.
I have faith the Holy Spirit can melt an ice-encased heart—a heart that’s cold and indifferent to God. The Lord changes people’s hearts all the time. God’s work on earth—redemption, salvation, repentance—is all about changing hearts. It’s His specialty.
So don’t despair if nothing seems to happen when you pray. You can’t see it, but as you pray, the Holy Spirit’s life-giving water is flowing. The ice is cracking and starting to melt. The Lord is thawing and softening that person’s heart.
Pray for someone you know who has a hard heart. Then watch as God’s Spirit melts their hard heart.
(Photo courtesy of pixabay.)
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