Morning & Evening Devotional Reading– October 16– Evening
by Charles H. Spurgeon, Revised and Edited by William C. Neff
“With You, [Lord,] is the fountain of life.”
There are times in our spiritual experience when human counsel and religious ordinances fail to comfort or help us. Why does our gracious God permit this? Perhaps it is because we have been living too much without him, and he, therefore, takes away everything upon which we have been in the habit of depending, that he may drive us to himself.
It is a blessed thing to live at the fountain of life. When our water bottles are full, we are content, like Hagar and Ishmael, to venture out into the wilderness; but, when they become empty, nothing will serve us but to confess, “You alone, O God, see me.” We are like the prodigal; we can end up in the swine-troughs and forget our Father’s house. And we can make swine-troughs even out of religious practices; they are blessed things, to be sure, but we can put them in God’s place, and then they are of no value. Anything becomes an idol when it keeps us away from God. Even the bronze serpent Moses raised in the wilderness was later torn down by Hezekiah since the people had begun to worship it instead of God.
Our Lord favors us with a famine in the land so that we may seek after him all the more. The best place for a Christian to live is in God’s grace—remaining where we first stood– “Having nothing and yet possessing all things.” Let us never for a moment think that our standing is in our sanctification, our mortification, our graces, or our feelings, but know that it is only because Christ offered a full atonement that we are saved and made complete in him. We have nothing to trust in ourselves, so we rest upon the merits of Jesus alone; his passion and holy life furnish us with the only sure ground of confidence.
Dear lover of God, when we become truly thirsty, we will surely turn to the fountain of life with eagerness. [M&E]