The Bottle or the Spring
J. T. Mawson
Hagar's bottle soon ran dry in the desert, and it may be that her distress and disappointment thereat blinded her eyes to an unfailing spring that was close at hand. Anyhow, she is a forlorn and pathetic figure crouching on those desert sands, about a bow-shot from her dying lad. Cast out from her home, her son was her world and her life, and now that “ the water was spent in the bottle ,” what was there for him and for her but death? But Hagar's extremity was God's opportunity, and He turned her eyes from the empty bottle to the inexhaustible spring. What an eager, happy woman she must have been as the life-giving drops of that water bathed and revived the lips and throat of her dying boy!
Are we depending on the bottle, perhaps trying to extract some drops from its dryness? Hear the Word of the living God, “I will give to him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.” Discard the bottle and rejoice in the fountain. The bottle may even be some favourite preacher, some religious service, something that may be right in its place, but it is not the fountain and it will run dry and disappoint. The fountain is inexhaustible, it is Christ.