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Hardened Hearts

Last week, our church wagon was frozen stiff, and its front doors could not be opened at all. We had to use warm water of about 40oC to melt the thick icicles down. These hanging icicles were formed by the freezing of dripping water from melted snow on the roof of the vehicle. We managed to defreeze the doors after many kettles and pails of warm water. As we were going through the process, I felt that the Lord was teaching me a lesson about our heart conditions through knowing the snow conditions.

Snow crystals are more than just frozen water vapors. They are formed directly from condensing water vapor in the air, usually around a nucleus of dust or some other foreign particles. Their sizes range from microscopic to a few millimetres. Due to the molecular structure of water, these snow crystals are hexagonal in shape.

Snow falls down from the skies in one of the following forms:

Snow crystals

They are single ice crystals, often in symmetrically hexagonal shapes.


A snowflake consists of up to 100 snow crystals clumped together. These collections of snow crystals bound together loosely into puff-balls. These balls can grow to about 10 cm when the snow is especially wet and sticky.


They are super cooled tiny water droplets, especially in a fog, that quickly freeze onto whatever they hit.


They are loose collections of frozen water droplets, and are sometimes called soft hail.


These are large solid chunks of ice.

Fallen snow on the ground changes their properties through time, weather and the acts of man. The following explains briefly their processes:

Types Of Snow On Ground

Some Spiritual Applications


This is freshly fallen, untouched, smooth and soft snow.

Powder snow represents pure hearts, soft and tender before God and others, full of grace and mercy.

Pure hearts do not conform to worldly standards and measurements. They are unadulterated, undefiled, single-minded and spontaneous.


Fresh powder snow soon becomes trod upon or tracked out, resulting in an uneven surface with lumps of soft powder-like snow and slippery patches.

Through the wears and tears of life, our hearts become uneven.

We are soft towards some people, but a little hard and indifferent towards others.

At times we are soft towards God, but at other times we are indifferent or hard towards Him.


This crust is formed when the sun's rays and the wind melt the top layer of powder, but the surrounding cold temperatures make it freeze back into solid again.

This harder crust is on top of softer powder snow.

When the love of the Son of God begins to touch our lives, our hearts begin to melt. But as we go forth from His warm presence and face the coldness of our world outside, our hearts begin to freeze again.

We then begin to build a wall of barrier between ourselves and others.


When the air temperatures become warmer than the freezing point, the snow starts to melt. Its water contents become very high.

These delicate snow crystals then change into large grains of ice, and slush is formed.

Slush is basically wet and sticky snow.

Sometimes, slush can cause avalanches if the weight of the snow on the top is too heavy.

The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit,
A broken and a contrite heart--
These, O God, You will not despise.
Psalm 51:17

Brokenness is good if it is led by the Spirit and not by the flesh.

Some people are broken beyond repair and for ungodly reasons. Their lives become completely ruined. If not checked and monitored properly, they can breakdown or freak out at any time.


This is formed when snow has been melted and frozen again for a number of times. Its solid surface is hard and slippery.

Most fatal accidents happen because of ice.

When our hearts hear the Word of God, it gets warm. But when we do not do and obey the Word of God, we get cold. As this continues day by day and week by week, our hearts will eventually become hardened and cold. Some hearts have been hard frozen for years!

To melt these cold and hardened hearts, we need many "kettles and pails of warm water" (times of refreshing) before our hearts become heartwarming again.

Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says:

"Today, if you will hear His voice,
Do not harden your hearts
as in the rebellion,
In the day of trial in the wilderness,
Where your fathers tested Me, tried Me,
And saw My works forty years.
Therefore I was angry with that generation,
And said, 'They always go astray in their heart,
And they have not known My ways.'
So I swore in My wrath, 'They shall not enter My rest.' "

Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you
an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God;
but exhort one another daily, while it is called "
lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.

For we have become partakers of Christ if
we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end,
while it is said:
"Today, if you will hear His voice,
Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion."

For who, having heard, rebelled?
Indeed, was it not all who came out of Egypt, led by Moses?

Now with whom was He angry forty years?
Was it not with those who sinned, whose corpses fell in the wilderness?

And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who did not obey?

So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief. (Hebrews 3:7-19)

There are so many lessons we can learn from the Israelites in their 40 years' journey through the wilderness. They were in the presence of God day and night. But their hearts remained unfaithful, full of doubt and unbelief. They tempted God. They provoked Him to anger. They did not trust Him. They did not believe Him, and keep His commandments. They murmured against Him and His servant, Moses. They did not take heed to the voice of God.

Even then, God continued to shine His love in their hearts. He loved them with an everlasting love. He continued to draw them towards Him with His tender kindness. He continued to provide their daily needs, food and drinks. Though God walked with them daily, yet they did not know God's ways.

An unbelieving heart is an evil heart! If left alone, it will become hardened as time goes by. Very soon, it will depart and desert the God of love!

Whenever God speaks to us, let's respond immediately. Today! Let's not procrastinate and say that we will do it tomorrow. Sometimes, tomorrow is too late as the heart becomes hardened through today.

When God impresses us to change, change today!
When God impresses us to do something, do it today!
When God impresses us to love someone, love today!
When God impresses us to help someone, help today!
When God impresses us to pray for someone, pray today!
When God impresses us to give to someone, give today!
When God impresses us to bless someone, bless today!
When God impresses us to go, go today!

If we don't do it today, we may never get to do it at all. It may be too late when our hearts become hardened today. We need to love and bless others not because others need our love or blessings but simply because we need to - for the sake of our own hearts.

Why does God give us His Spirit and His anointing? Simply to be a blessing to bless others. We must always remember these precious words of the Lord Jesus, "It is more blessed to give than to receive." (Acts 20:35)

"The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me,
Because the LORD has anointed Me
To preach good tidings to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives,
And the opening of the prison to those who are bound;
To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD,
And the day of vengeance of our God;
To comfort all who mourn,
To console those who mourn in Zion,
To give them beauty for ashes,
The oil of joy for mourning,
The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness;
That they may be called trees of righteousness,
The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified." (Isaiah 61:1-3)

In conclusion, I would like to share with you the lyrics of a song called "The Rose":

Some say love, it is a river
That drowns the tender reed.
Some say love, it is a razor
That leaves your soul to bleed.

Some say love, it is a hunger
An endless, aching need
I say love, it is a flower,
And you, its only seed.

It's the heart afraid of breaking
That never learns to dance .
It's the dream afraid of waking
That never takes the chance.

It's the one who won't be taken,
Who cannot seem to give .
And the soul afraid of dying
That never learns to live.

And the night has been too lonely
And the road has been too long.
And you think that love is only
For the lucky and the strong.

Just remember in the winter
Far beneath the bitter snow
Lies the seed that with the sun's love,
In the spring, becomes a rose.

Written on:
18 January 2006