I really liked this thought from Heirs in Hope:
When the angel of the Lord commands Lot and his family not to look back, I do not think he is creating a supreme test to determine whether they will be faithful. Instead, he seeks to protect them from a horror they cannot encompass. He warns them so as to save them from the becoming enmeshed in the destruction that befalls the cities on the plain.
Some things are too big for us. Some losses so great, they will destroy us. Some experiences so fraught with destruction, that only by God�s grace can we avoid being engulfed too. We have been created to shut down emotionally, to be unable to take in that which is overwhelming. But that very act of shutting down can become destruction if there is no awakening: when Lot�s wife looks back, what she sees is so overwhelming she becomes �pure, distilled tear-stuff, the physical manifestation of sorrow.
. . .
I think I can better understand the apostles who fled the crucifixion. In all history, that must have been the greatest horror anyone could have faced. How look on the sight of the man you know to be God being tortured and killed by those he came to save? How survive that? Sanity would drive them to hide, to believe they had perhaps been mistaken. But those who stayed � his Mother, John, the other Mary – those who bore it without being utterly destroyed, we know they received tremendous grace, were given the ability to see him die without becoming �the physical manifestation of sorrow.�
His grace is real, overcomes the most devastating sorrow. None of the ugliness in this world, not even the horrors men release on each other can impede the grace that is ours through Christ. And perhaps, one day we will meet Lot�s wife whose utter sorrow will have been transformed into absolute joy by the sight of His overwhelming love.”
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