Once again we have a Bible Lesson filled with thought-provoking questions. Once again we are provided with answers that will promote spiritual growth.
"Wilt thou set thine eyes upon that which is not?" This is Proverbs 23:5. Just what are we choosing to see when we look at ourselves, someone else, or a challenging situation. This first section of the Lesson continues with more questions about why a nation or its people would turn away from our Father Mother God. The answer provided is one to think about. They committed two errors; they chose to forsake God and instead built cisterns, broken cisterns that can hold no water. To forsake is to leave altogether, to abandon. Sounds pretty dramatic, but there are times when we choose to abandon what we know to be true about God's wonderful creation and totally accept a material, flawed creation as the reality. We do not look to Him for comfort and healing, we choose another path. Maybe we think this particular claim can't or won't yield through prayer. Maybe we have given it our best effort but there has not been improvement. You have made your request of God, but the answer does not come. This is where the cisterns come in.
Dummelow's Bible Commentary explains, "God's blessing, under the figure of fresh water as supplied by a spring or rivulet, is contrasted with the vanity of serving idols, which is as devoid of profit as is a cracked reservoir (dug to collect rain water) for that which it is intended to supply". The Prophet is cautioning the people who have turned away from God to worship idols. Have we turned away from God to worship the material body, ours or someone else's? Have we decided to depend on other sources for supply? That will not provide what we need. Trusting in matter just doesn't hold water.
So the first section speaks to me about being true to the model God has created and maintained. My spiritual identity as His perfect image and likeness. Do you still use bar soap in the shower? Pick up a bar of Dial soap to be a daily reminder; Divine Image And Likeness.
I like Mrs. Eddy's description of a sculptor, molding and chiseling thought. What model are we holding up before ourselves and have we accepted a false model? Are we doing that about someone else? That only leads to following a downward path, limiting our capabilities, accepting a bad outline. The answer lies in changing our point of view, turning our gaze in the right direction and then holding to the true model in thought so we can live a good life.
Don't waste your life trusting in broken cisterns. Whatever they seem to offer just runs out, leaks away, fails to supply or satisfy. Choose instead to rely on the ever-present goodness of God who pours out blessings all the time. See the good in yourself and others. See it because that is what God has done and He saw it as very good. That has not changed, only our focus can make it seem like it has. Adjust our focus for a clearer, truer picture. What comes into focus is worth the effort.