Bible in a Year:
Job 5–7 Acts 8:1–25
March on, my soul; be strong!
In 2012, Phillips, Craig and Dean released their song “Tell Your Heart to Beat Again.” It was inspired by the true story of a heart surgeon. After removing a patient’s heart to repair it, the surgeon returned it to the chest and began gently massaging it back to life. But the heart wouldn’t restart. More intense measures followed, but the heart still wouldn’t beat. Finally, the surgeon knelt next to the unconscious patient and spoke to her: “Miss Johnson,” he said, “this is your surgeon. The operation went perfectly. Your heart has been repaired. Now tell your heart to beat again.” Her heart began to beat.
The idea that we could tell our physical heart to do something might seem strange, but it has spiritual parallels. “Why, my soul, are you downcast?” the psalmist says to himself. “Put your hope in God” (Psalm 42:5). “Return to your rest, my soul,” says another, “for the Lord has been good to you” (116:7). After beating Israel’s enemies in war, Deborah, a judge, revealed that she too had spoken to her heart during battle. “March on, my soul,” she told it, “be strong!” (Judges 5:21), because the Lord had promised victory (4:6–7).
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Our capable Surgeon has mended our heart (Psalm 103:3). So when fear, depression, or condemnation come, perhaps we too should address our souls and say: March on! Be strong! Feeble heart, beat again.