This Day in History – first human heart transplant

Did you know that on this day (December 3) in 1967, a 53-year-old male traded his heart for that of a 25 year old female?

It was the first human heart transplant. (Read more.)

The man’s heart was bad, his body sick and dying. The woman’s body was fatally injured in a car accident, but her heart was good.

Good for bad. Life for death. Hope for the hopeless. Strength for weakness. A new heart for the old heart.

For 18 days her heart beat inside of his chest.

And, then he died.

No, his body didn’t reject her heart. Her heart remained strong and continued to work as it should until he drew his last breath.

Trading his heart for hers isn’t what killed him.

The medication given him to prevent his body from rejecting her heart weakened his immunity and raised his risk of infection.

Double pneumonia is what killed him.

Some would say he was dead anyway, for without the immunosuppressive drug, he would have rejected her heart.

Her heart in his body – that’s an odd thought, isn’t it. A female heart beating in a male body – alien and impossible. Everything within him was male/male except for her heart.

Would you believe…some questioned if having the heart of a woman would change him? …make him less of the man he was and more like the one whose heart now beat within him.

And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart.*

God offers us all a heart transplant.

New for old. Good for bad. Healthy for hardened. Life eternal for a living death.

What an intriguing, alien, impossible thought – God’s heart for my own.

As all new things do, this brings about questions. (Remember those asked about the first human heart transplant?)

If my heart is traded for God’s heart…I wonder…will I be different? Will I change? Will I become less of who I am and more like the one whose heart beats within me?

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!**

The answer is YES!

(*Ezekiel 36:26 NLT) (**2 Corinthians 5:17 NIV)


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