Yesterday my heart stopped. Anna, my six-year-old was riding her bike and was racing the other kids in the neighborhood on their bikes when Anna’s front wheel turned sharply and threw her over the handlebars on to the cement. I saw the whole thing from the porch. She landed on her head and her hip. I ran to her side, thinking the worst and truly afraid for my sweet Anna’s life. After checking her out from head to toe she appeared to be okay, thank the Lord. Now I find myself dwelling on how fearful I am.
Out of my fear I want to tell my daughter that she can never ride her bike again and out of fear I want to do do do and do some more to protect her and my family from any and everything imaginable from hurting us. Is this the right course of action?
for my people have committed two evils: they have forsaken me, the fountain of living waters, and hewed out cisterns for themselves, broken cisterns that can hold no water.
What does this have to do with fear you ask. When we read this passage we recognize the living waters as God and we read the cisterns as our effort and material things but I think we miss the underlying heart issues. First, let’s look at the cisterns. The building of cisterns was to collect and hold water for the times when the river or creek stopped flowing, the cisterns would still have some water in them hopefully enough to hold them over until the rains came and the rivers and creeks flowed again. Now, look at who is the flowing water in this passage, God. The people made these cisterns out of fear. Fear that God would not deliver the way he said He would. The root of fear is unbelief. I do it, I store up and hoard things instead of giving and not just things and money but more often and more to my shame I don’t give of my time or love. I am a selfish fool. The time and effort I speak of is not the time and effort to feed the needy etc., while those are great things I am talking about the time and effort to love my wife or love my kids. Unbelief is the great thief. Unbelief steals the joys that God has given me. If I really believe in God’s sovereignty then there is freedom from fear and freedom to live like Christ said: “live abundantly”.
I have never taken the time to think about this particular verse, though I have read it and heard it several times. Upon taking the time to think about what is being said, I would have to agree with your view. I believe that the cisterns were built out of fear, the fear of the unknown. I believe that we do the same thing because we don’t truly believe that He is sovereign and that all things are within His control. I think we sometimes view God as an observer, not as the ruler of all the universe. I truly believe that if we really knew that God was sovereign then that “knowing” would eliminate all fear and unbelief. The fact that we doubt it, however, does not make it not so. God is sovereign, period. I believe that there has to be a transformation in the body of Christ’s belief on His sovereignty. I believe that it starts with you and it has to start with me. We have to change our belief and began to express that to those around us. But make no mistake, and you are right on point, sir, God is that living water and even if we did build up those cisterns to try and contain Him, like the verse says, “broken cisterns that cannot hold water”, it would be impossible. He is uncontainable because He does live. Thank you for your thought provoking view.
Larry Fischer says
Thank you Robby for your comment.