Recently I read a story about a taxi driver in India by the name of Harpreet Dev. Apparently, the thirty or so year old man is well known for his reverse driving skills. In his story, he tells us that it happened by accident. He had been driving his Fiat Padmini and it had gotten stuck in reverse late one night. “I was outside the city, had no money, so I thought of driving the car backward until Bhatinda,” he said. “Then I drove backward and later on I gained confidence.” He gained enough confidence it became the only way he drove, in reverse. At the time the article was published, he had been driving backward everywhere he went for 11 years – pretty impressive. While Harpreet’s driving won him some fame in his hometown, it did come at a price – he now suffers from severe back and neck problems. He admitted, “I have got a severe backbone problem from driving so fast in reverse because my whole body gets contorted.”
While I admit he sounds almost as fascinating as Tow Mater, (Disney’s film Cars) I couldn’t help but think about how much he sacrificed by looking back. Looking in the rearview cost him physically and he would likely suffer the rest of his life all for a few years of fame and fun. So, what does this have to do with you? Well hopefully nothing, but I know for me, it’s easy to get stuck looking back when God’s called me to move forward. Let’s take a peek at scripture.
The sun had risen over the earth when Lot came to Zoar. Then the LORD rained on Sodom and Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven, and He overthrew those cities, and all the valley, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and what grew on the ground. But his wife, from behind him, looked back, and she became a pillar of salt. Genesis 19:23-26
Lot and his family were allowed to flee from the wicked city of Sodom and Gomorrah before God brought destruction upon it. Verse seventeen says, “As soon as the angels got them (Lot and his family) outside, one of them said, “Run for your lives! Don’t look back and don’t stop anywhere on the plain! Run to the mountains, or you will be swept away!” So they ran, they headed out, but Lot’s wife looked back. Something I found interesting is the Hebrew for “looked back,” in this passage, it means more than to look over one’s shoulder. But it actually means “to regard, to consider, to pay attention to.” I believe Lot’s wife hadn’t genuinely left the city, at least not in her heart. God called her out, and she stayed behind turning into a pillar of salt. Looking in the rearview stopped her in her tracks, she was unable to move forward anymore. The past she wanted so much robbed her of the future God had planned for her.
I can’t begin to tell you how many times my past life, past mistakes, and past hurts have tried to keep me from moving forward. But I refuse to allow what was to rob me of what can be. Let’s be a people who run for our lives, and who don’t look back! Trust God is leading you to something new and better, he wants only the very best for His children, let’s not get caught looking in the rearview.