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“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.” (Ezekiel 37: 5-6)
In this passage, the prophet Ezekiel has a vision of a valley of dried bones, referencing the People of Israel in exile. The imagery of this text is undoubtedly gruesome and difficult to dwell on, but such is grief. Often in times of grief, we want to move on as quickly as possible, whether it is our own grief or the grief of a close friend.
God takes these dry bones and breathes in new life, stitching together the fabrics of muscle and skin. In grief, there is incredible opportunity for new life to grow in the form of relationship or spiritual development. But in order to receive the gift of new life and strengthened muscles, first we must experience the valley of dried bones. Today, take the time to remember your recent grieving and allow yourself to feel the depth of that valley of grief. And remember also that God is with you in the valley, ready to breathe new life into our lungs.
Holy God, we ask that you breathe a breath of new life in us today as be with us as we remember those people and those things we lost in this year and years past. Help us to be patient in the valley and to be patient with ourselves. Amen.
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