Ezekiel 37:1-14 (NIV)
The Valley of Dry Bones
37 The hand of the Lord was on me, and he brought me out by the Spirit of the Lord and set me in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. 2 He led me back and forth among them, and I saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley, bones that were very dry. 3 He asked me, “Son of man, can these bones live?”
I said, “Sovereign Lord, you alone know.”
4 Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the Lord! 5 This is what the Sovereign Lord says to these bones: I will make breath[a] enter you, and you will come to life. 6 I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord.’”
7 So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I was prophesying, there was a noise, a rattling sound, and the bones came together, bone to bone. 8 I looked, and tendons and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them, but there was no breath in them.
9 Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to it, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Come, breath, from the four winds and breathe into these slain, that they may live.’” 10 So I prophesied as he commanded me, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet—a vast army.
11 Then he said to me: “Son of man, these bones are the people of Israel. They say, ‘Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.’ 12 Therefore prophesy and say to them: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: My people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel. 13 Then you, my people, will know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves and bring you up from them. 14 I will put my Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the Lord have spoken, and I have done it, declares the Lord.’”
Did you notice the above picture? Does it look like life is there? To me it looks dead and dry, no life whatsoever. But only God knows right?
If we look at Ezekiel 37 we see that in verse 2-3 Ezekiel says God brought him out by the spirit and set him in the middle of the valley, full of bones. Then the Lord asked him can these bones live? Ezekiel replies that the Lord alone knows. God fully knew that the bones could live but he questioned Ezekiel as more of a questioning of his faith. Did Ezekiel truly believe God could breathe life into these dead bones?
If we continue and we look a little further into verse 4-9 and the Lord tells Ezekiel to prophesy to the bones and tell them dry bones hear the word of the Lord, I will make breath enter you and you will come to life. I will attach tendons and flesh on you and cover you with skin I will put breathe in you and you will come to life. Then Ezekiel sees the bones coming together and flesh and skin growing on the bones. He sees that even though his eyes see bones that are alive covered with flesh and tendons the bones still have no breath. So he prophesies saying, “Come from the four winds and breath into these slain that they may live.” Then all of a sudden as the breath entered them they came to life and stood up on their feet a vast army.
Many times in my life I have seen through my own eyes, a lifeless situation of dry bones, no possibility of life I can see. Then something changes and the situation may even look better but still no life, no breath in it. Just because something has the skin and tendons doesn’t mean it has life, God has to breathe life into a dead bones situation before the army can stand to their feet. Otherwise they would just be fake people, no souls taking up space, easily knocked over and defeated.
Can we look at a situation with our own eyes and discern based only on what our eyes can see and say, “These are dead bones they can’t live?” Look back at the picture at the top of this blog, is there life there based on what your eyes can see?
The picture above has lots of life in it but your eyes can’t see it. Let me explain. The picture was taken in Anaheim California, at Radiator Springs in Disneyland. If you look closely you can see seagulls all around the top of the picture. In the shadows at the bottom of the picture there is a line of people waiting for the ride. There is so much life hidden in this picture impossible to see with just our eyes and our own vantage point. I being the creator of the picture have the best viewpoint and I am able to share with you the reader the truth behind the shadows.
What if we started viewing the dead bones in our life differently? What if we said, “O Sovereign Lord, you alone know.” What if we started prophesying and speaking life into the dead bones of our life? What if we refused to believe based on what we see and we started believing based on faith, what God sees? I have quite a few dead bones situations in my life and many of them I have just cemented in my mind the lie that says that there’s no life in them. But God has begun to reveal the truth, and breathe life into what I thought was dead bones. God is showing me the truth in the shadows.
Hebrews 11:1 (NIV) says: Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.
Hebrews 11:6 (NIV) says: And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
In March of last year we accepted the call of the Lord and our family moved from Wenatchee Washington to Gilbert Arizona. We had prayed about this move for over 6 years. We sold some stuff, packed up our belongings in a U-Haul and drove 1400 miles to our new home. We moved site unseen, we left all family, friends, and church to follow the Lord. We had no job and trusted the Lord to provide. After our arrival the Lord provided a job and we were thankful. After a few short months my husband resigned due to unethical practices from his boss, we’re unwilling to lie, cheat, or steal to get a sale. Our family has been unemployed since September 2015, and the Lord has provided for everything we have needed and we are thankful for his faithfulness. We are now presented with the situation of staying here or moving. During our short time here the Lord has provided much healing in our hearts and allowed relationships to start to be restored. But we believe the Lord is calling us to start a church now. I am looking at this picture and seeing only dead bones. I am consumed with doubt and fear and a headache full of questions with no answers. As we share our burdens with you, will you pray for us?
Today, will you join me? Write down your dead bones and speak life to it. Pray over them and leave the rest to God because He alone knows. Is this process easy? Nope it is very difficult but the life of Faith is a difficult one that requires believing when we don’t see it.
Please share your dead bones with us so we can pray for you.
Lord hear our prayers give us more faith. Give us the strength to believe when we can’t see. God only you alone know, give us more courage to do what your asking even when we can’t see. Lord help us to not waiver, strengthen our weak knees and breathe life into these dead bones. Show us what you see, give us your vantage point. Open our eyes to the bigger picture. Shower us with your peace and your provision in Jesus name amen.