Lot's wife looked back and became a pillar of salt. That's a very strange story in the Bible.
Our need to look back isn't such a strange thing however.
We look back to make sense.
We look back to try and process.
We look back because we want to understand.
We look back because we feel afraid.
We look back because it's hard to let go.
We look back because the world as we know it might be gone forever.
We look back, maybe one last time, to convince ourselves that this is really happening.
We journey and move through space and time.
Then becomes now.
Then now becomes then.
A journey - a trail - a way.
A man’s mind plans his way [as he journeys through life],
But the Lord directs his steps and establishes them
~ Proverbs 3:9 [AMP]
As a man - and a woman - plan their ways, they expect to see plans fulfilled as they look back on life.
But expectation and reality are seldom the same.
Looking back can fill you with remorse, regret, and dispair.
It can turn you into a pillar of salt.
Stagnant. Lifeless. Motionless.
Eroded by time.
Erased by pain.
Is that all that there is to see?
What if you look back expectantly?
Expect literally means 'to look out for'.
What could you look out for?
What if we can look back and appreciate?
What if we can look back and see how we were guided and directed?
What if we can look back and and realise how our steps were secured and established?
What if we can look back and become aware that we were never alone on this journey to begin with?
What if we can look back and hold the tension between sense and faith, fear and trust, and loneliness and love?
It's then when we look back that we can see a track record of God's grace and presence.
Not like a pillar of salt, but a pillar of fire.