Reviving Old Wells

Scripture Reading — Genesis 26:18-25

Isaac reopened the wells that had been dug in the time of his father Abraham, which the Philistines had stopped up . . . . — Genesis 26:18

Throughout the history of the church, many Christian communities have been wells of living water that have helped to provide spiritual life. They have brimmed with people praising God, but now in some places the living water in old churches and cathedrals is running out. They once were places where their surrounding communities found sustenance and strength in God, but now many are empty reminders of the past.

Isaac was called to remain in the land and avoid going away to Egypt in a time of famine (Genesis 26:1-6). Egypt had abundant fresh water and fertile land even in times of famine, but Canaan was barren and dry. Isaac was called to trust in God for his security during this lean time. He obeyed God and redug wells in the places his father Abraham had dug. He experienced setbacks because of quarreling and was unable to keep the first two wells. He then moved and dug a third well, “and no one quarreled over it.” So “he named it Rehoboth, saying, ‘Now the Lord has given us room and we will flourish in the land.’”

Today we need people with courage who share God’s love and help to revive old wells to bring living water again. Even in troubled times we can take heart, because God will make room for us and fill us with living water. May we overflow with God’s love to everyone!


Lord, thank you for spiritual ancestors who faithfully tended wells of living water. By your Spirit, may old wells nourish communities again. Amen.