Hello My Name Is…. (Week 1) – Lot’s Wife
Welcome to the first summary post of our new series – Hello My Name Is? I hope you have enjoyed digging in to our first meditation verse, and starting to understand a little more about Lot’s Wife. Maybe you knew the story, maybe you didn’t. At the end she gets turned into a pillar of salt, and that’s the biggest thing I remember about her. Do you think it was deserved, or unfair, or too judgemental? I’m not sure what I thought, but its certainly an interesting story that I’ve enjoyed getting to know more this week.
” When he hesitated, the men grasped his hand and the hands of his wife and of his two daughters and led them safely out of the city, for the Lord was merciful to them. As soon as they had brought them out, one of them said, “Flee for your lives! Don’t look back, and don’t stop anywhere in the plain! Flee to the mountains or you will be swept away!” Genesis 19:16-17
THE URGENCY OF THIS MOMENT
The first thing that struck me was the urgency and severity of this moment. These two men came to speak to Lot, to explain that something bad was about to happen, and yet Lot didn’t seem to see anything bad on the horizon. Perhaps that was because all seemed normal and calm. He and his family were going about their normal lives, and nothing seemed out of place. But from looking at the surrounding passages, we know that something bad is coming. Judgement on their city. Now, I always thought that this was something God was “sending”, so he could wait until Lot and his family were safely out of the way. But a really interesting article that was shared in our Facebook Community suggests perhaps it was a natural phenomenon such as an asteroid exploding just above Sodom and Gomorrah which would have caused it to rain fire and the heat would evaporate the water of the dead sea, sending salt and other minerals into the atmosphere. This to me sounds like something that is already on its way. It is heading for them, and it is not slowing down. The men know this and are working to a deadline, but Lot and his wife wouldn’t have known this. They think they have all the time in the world to make a decision. Only they don’t.
THE CONFUSION OF THE UNKNOWN
During this week I had the image of a mum grabbing a toddler by the hand and trying to pull them away from danger. Many of us attested to the fact that our kids would protest to this – kick and scream and shout and maybe even try to get back to the place they wanted to be, even though it was dangerous. No-one likes to be rushed or have their plans scuppered.
Now, fast forward to when they are a bit older, and you can communicate that danger with them. When you grab their hand then it makes sense, they understand why, and perhaps aren’t as likely to protest as much. Knowing why something is happening is a big help in being able to react well to it. My big question here is – did Lot’s Wife know what was going on? Was she party to the conversation that the men were having with Lot, or was she just yanked from her home without knowing why? I felt sad for Lot’s Wife when I thought about this, as if she didn’t really understand then it was only natural for her to look back to what she thought was her place of safety, her home.
THE FEAR OF THE FUTURE
The commands that the men gave Lot and his family are very direct – flee for your lives, don’t stop or look back, as you run to your new destination. In this moment everything changes, and yet Lot’s wife isn’t allowed time to dwell on it. Her head must be swimming with a million thoughts. Those of the past, or the place they had lived and the friends they had made. Of the son’s in law they could have for their daughters if they stayed and the home that they had made in that place. Thoughts of the future too and how hard it would be to survive in the mountains, new food sources they’d have to find, new friends they’d have to make, and a million other unknowns. The future is scary, and even when the past is harmful and not good, it is known and that makes it appealing. In this moment, I can almost hears to cogs turning in the head of Lot’s Wife as she goes over everything. Maybe she was having a panic attack, frozen in fear and unable to go forward with her family.
RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD MAKES IT LESS SCARY
A lot of us mentioned in the discussion this week that we felt Lot and his family had been compromised living in Sodom. That Lot was willing to give his daughters to the men outside his house to take advantage of is a sign of this. And so perhaps both Lot and his wife had lost their way with God, lost their connection with him. God is trying to rescue them so this can be restored, but because they don’t know him as well, they don’t have his strength to draw on during this stressful situation. Lot hesitated, and his wife probably picked up on this, together they didn’t trust God that there was a reason to leave.
NOTHING GOOD COMES FROM LOOKING BACK
My final thought for this week, and the thing I am going to take away from my meditations, is that nothing good comes from looking back. Now, I’m not saying we can’t remember nice times or be sentimental, but if that becomes your focus and all you think about, then you can’t move forward. If God is calling you out of something, then thinking about what you did have isn’t going to help you. Step out in faith and follow where God is leading you. And sometimes accept that God has to drag you kicking and screaming from your comfort zone to get you out of situations that will destroy you.
We have one more week thinking about Lot’s wife, and cementing the lessons from her life. I hope you will join me in meditating on the following verse:
“Remember Lot’s wife! Whoever tries to keep their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life will preserve it.” Luke 17:32-33
It’s really interesting that Lot’s Wife gets another mention in the New Testament, so lets have a think this week over why.
If you are still wanting some help or place to keep your notes for this series, then why not download or order a copy of the workbook available as part of one of the kits: