I realize that people use various means to forget or escape problems. Some get drunk by drinking lots of beer. Some try smoking. Some throw themselves in work. Others would take up compulsive shopping, movie watching or overeating. There are some who would resort to extreme actions such as drug addiction, sex, pornography, masturbation, adultery, even stealing money.
Why do we do these things? We want to feel better. We want our pains and problems to go away. But have these things made us really feel better, take the problems and pains away? Not one a bit. We only escape for a while! For when we don't do these things, we can still feel the aches inside. We find ourselves just saddled with more emptiness, frustration, shame, or guilt.
Let me take you to this passage in Jeremiah 2:13 that explains why this is so:
"My people have committed two sins.
They have forsaken Me,
The spring of living water.
And have dug their own cisterns,
Broken cisterns that cannot hold water."
"Broken cisterns that do not hold water." What a picture of filling up our pain or covering up our sin with false saviors, empty substitutes, that only leave us thirstier! And will eventually kill our souls. As Thomas Brooks asked, "If you grieve by your willful sinning He that alone can gladden you, who then will make you glad?"
We all need to leave our false saviors. God calls us to drink deeply again from the true Spring:
"Come, all you who are thirsty,
Come to the waters ...
... whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst."
(Isaiah 55:1; John 4:13)