Bible in a Year – Ezekiel 1-37 – Dry Bones

I came to one of the most well known passages in the book of Ezekiel today.  Chapter 37 where Ezekiel is given a vision of a valley of dry bones and, in the vision, those bones miraculously return to life as full human bodies.  Bones come together, sinews, ligaments, muscles, and skin until finally the breath, the ruach, of life is breathed into them and they are alive once more.  It is a vision that I have heard shared on in so many different ways over the years.  But this morning, I heard it not on its own but instead with the 36 chapters that have come before it.  Thirty-six chapters that are filled mostly with condemnations of Israel, Judah, and the surrounding nations.  It has been a hard thirty-six chapters.  By the time I got to this chapter today, my Bible reading was feeling a bit like that valley.  But there’s the promise here of what is to come.  

Yesterday and today, I saw around me how we have moved into the season of “dry bones” right now.  Both mornings, as I walked with Scout, I saw how the vibrant colors of summer and autumn are gone.  The leaves have fallen, the trees are bare, and in the skies were grey.  In the bottom photo, what had been tall reeds and plants have been mowed down, preparing it to grow fully once again next Spring.  But for now, it will lay fallow and empty.  In both of these spaces, I felt the sense of being amongst dry bones and waiting for life to return.  

One thing I do know, however, is that while we are just starting Winter, Spring will come.  The leaves will return, the greens will be restored, the vibrancy will be back.  That’s the cycle of creation.  But beyond the cycles of the seasons, my prayer today was for those I know who feel they are in a valley such as Ezekiel saw and for those who are despairing for a world that feels that way.  

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