Christian Growth, Devotionals

Broken Cisterns

Pam Ford Davis


I’m a country girl, who grew up in the rural neighborhood of Mycenae, outside of Syracuse, N.Y. Our family used a water-well and pump, and we greatly appreciated the benefits of a large cistern in our basement. My parents thought green before ecology became a global buzzword; they stored rainwater in a cellar cistern for household use.

Mom and Dad complained about the hard-water pumped from the well. We depended upon water softener additives. Rainwater from the cistern far surpassed well water for bathing, cleaning laundry, and especially for washing hair. Our neighborhood offered a fresh water spring. We could always depend on it to provide clear ice-cold water. Wild spearmint grew along the edge; we often picked and chewed the leaves before gulping water cupped in eager hands. Today’s bottled water or tap water cannot compare.

Jeremiah gives applicable teaching, focusing on cisterns. They become useless when broken. “For My people have committed two evils: they have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, to hew for themselves cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water (Jeremiah 2:13 NAS).” God said His people abandoned Him, their source of fresh living waters, in the foolish exchange for broken cisterns. We do not need to patch up cracks of old leaking cisterns to quench spiritual thirst. Drink from His fountain and find never ending refreshment!


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