From Susan’s keyboards…
One of my favorite sections in the paper is the “Dear Abby” advice column. A couple of weeks ago, one particular advice column gave me a different “angle” regarding the story about Lot’s wife in the book of Genesis, Chapter 19. In this particular column, a widower was asking “Abby” for advice. Here is a copy of that column.
Dear Abby, my wife of 43 years died nine months ago after losing her four-year battle with cancer. I met a woman who had also experienced tragedy in her life, and we started seeing each other casually. When my wife’s three sisters found out, I became the outcast. Why do people think there is a set time to grieve? Life is too short to sit and pine. Memories will always be there. This woman has brought me out of my depression and sorrow. I can’t understand how people I thought cared for me could be so mean. Outcast in Pennsylvania.
Dear Outcast: You have had more than four years to grieve your late wife’s illness and death. Now go on with your life, and don’t look back. There’s a story in the book of Genesis about a man named Lot, whose wife looked back during the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah and was turned into a pillar of salt.
Abby used the story of Lot’s wife to encourage the widower to “go on with his life and not look back.” Her interpretation, though useful, was a simple explanation of a story.
Lot’s wife’s act of “looking back” has been studied by many biblical scholars including Jewish scholars. Theories about the meaning or reasons Lot looked back are many: Lot’s wife betrayed her regret for leaving for her life in Sodom evidenced by looking back, another theory explains she was turned into a pillar of salt because she was overtaken by the sulfurous vapors because she “lingered,” or perhaps she was hoping her other two daughters leave the city.
In Luke 17, Jesus is speaking to His disciples about the world before His Second Coming. Jesus says the world will like in the days before Noah and the Ark and life as it was in the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. Jesus warns us, when the time come for His return, those who linger/long for the things of this world will be left behind. Don’t be like them by hanging on to the things in this world (don’t look back) instead move with haste forward and you will preserve your life for the next world. Jesus reminds us, “Remember Lot’s wife.”
To sum it up, Jesus instructs us not to live according to the values of this world, instead live according to God’s Word and not to look back.
God has plans for each one of us. He loves us and wants us to grown in our relationship with Him
Jeremiah 29:11, it is written, “For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the LORD, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.”
God has a beautiful future for you. Looking back at our past can sometimes bring a type of death to your life and spirit. God can give us a new start because he will renew your mind.