“…show that you are a letter of Christ, prepared by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.” -2 Corinthians 3:3
One of the first large youth ministry events I organized was a youth rally meant to bring together the young people from several parishes in the Edmonton area. We titled it “Hearts of Stone and Flesh” in reference to the above scripture passage. Among other exciting things, we promised to give out free t-shirts to all who registered for this rally, and we wound up having 250 shirts printed with the following emblazoned across the front of the shirt in big, bold letters:
“ARE YOU STONE?”
This, of course, looked an awful lot like “are you stoned,” and reflects the first and last time I was ever allowed to design youth event t-shirts. In spite of these t-shirts, the rally was a great success (and is now headed into its thirteenth year) – and the theme is one that has stayed close to me in the years that have passed. Simply put, someone with a stony heart, is someone who, for a variety of reasons (usually sin or pain) has closed themselves off from loving others and being loved by them. Ezekiel explains that God intends to heal us of this condition:
“A new heart I will give you, and a new spirit I will put within you; and I will remove from your body the heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.” -Ezekiel 36:26
There is perhaps no place we see this play out more quickly than in the story of Luke Skywalker and his father, Darth Vader, in the original Star Wars trilogy.
[Read more…] about Lessons From Star Wars: The Stony Heart