Posted by: cindybythesea | December 4, 2013

Brown Thursday and A Pillar of Salt

This year shoppers had more incentive than ever to leave their Thanksgiving tables to hit the malls for early Christmas shopping and bargains. Before the bird was even cold or in some cases even carved, people were lined up (often outdoors and in the cold) for the chance to be first at the promised bargains. Brown Thursday they called it. Merchants eager to get a jump on black Friday opening their doors to hordes of people on what was once one of the most meaningful and sacred days of the year.

It wasn’t always this way. For I remember a time, when nary a store was open on Thanksgiving or Sunday either for that matter. Everyone had the opportunity to be at home with friends and family for a special day of giving thanks. But, over the years that has changed and we have become increasingly less interested in giving thanks than we are in getting stuff.  And, no doubt stores previously closed on Christmas day will now be open early so that the gifts unwrapped in the morning can be exchanged in the afternoon for the stuff that we really wanted but, didn’t get.

There’s a reason Lot’s wife was turned to salt. You remember her – Lot’s wife?  The woman who was turned to salt for looking back  as Sodom and Gomorrah were being destroyed.  A woman, who though instructed otherwise could not help herself for looking back as everything she owned was being incinerated in a fiery cascade of sulfur and brimstone.  A look that cost her dearly – her life - and left her with the dubious distinction of being known from that day forward as the woman who was turned to salt.

But, why salt?  Good question! There is a reason Lot’s wife was changed to salt and not chocolate or marshmallow or some other crazy kind of thing –  for salt, as we know is a mineral essential to life and therefore has been a very precious commodity from ancient times until this present day. And, while cheap and in abundance now, it was once bartered, traded and even used for currency; it’s where the term “salary” comes from and the expression “worth his salt”. In other words, salt was the equivalent of money – stuff – the material things of life. And, while the scripture does not tell us why Lot’s wife looked back; what she was turned in to (salt) does – Lot’s wife was turned in to what she valued most – money! Something, I never realized until my daughter “Seven Stars” pointed this out to me in a recent conversation.

The Bible warns us against materialism and the love of money and the example of Lot’s wife is just one way in which we are shown the folly of those who do. It’s admittedly difficult being cut off from the comforts, the luxuries and the material things of life that we have become so accustomed to. I found this out first hand as I had to sell almost everything I owned to leave Hawaii. And, when I was in Israel and was cut off for the better part of three weeks from junk food, soda and sweets. A simple but, healthy diet that I enjoyed for a while but, would have been very unhappy with much longer.  Causing me to admit my own dependence on these kinds of things and my own lack of ability for letting go.

It’s easy to fault Lot’s wife and the “brown Thursday”shoppers but, we all have our own struggle with materialism, don’t we?  Which leaves me wondering – how will we cope when these things are stripped away?  Something to think about, isn’t it?

“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem, they shall prosper who love thee”  Psalm 122:6

Watching and waiting with YOU for the soon return of Jesus!  Cindy

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Responses

  1. This is a sobering post, particularly for this time of year. I am facing a lot of down sizing myself as well. My youngest daughter has decided to move out, and our landlord has decided not to renew our lease, so we have to be out by Jan 1. It is crunch time, and holidays are gone for me, though still viewed as if looking into a television show for me and my husband.

    I don’t celebrity the pagan holiday, as many do. I try to keep our focus with Christ Our Risen Savior! So it won’t be missed as hard as for some.

    The “remember Lot’s wife”, has me wondering though. I struggle with giving up more and more, through my life. Sometimes I hope I am not trying earn my way into heaven, for trying so hard not to want or desire anything. I wonder if it pleases God, not to have anything. Would it be better if I had nothing at all? Why do we have desires for food, clothing, shelter, attractive surroundings, something to read or see, something to make with our minds or hands? Why didn’t God just create us to stand in one place and worship Him only? Sometimes, it seems it would be so much easier.

    I confess, I do not understand many things about God, or why He created us, or why He remains unseen to us, unable to chat with us, as we do with each other. My relationship often seems slightly one-sided. But with all my questions, my faith remains sure in Him. I do not doubt He is the One True Creator God. I have spent my life seeking Him, and my greatest desire, is seeing Him face to face.

    God bless you Cindy, I am glad you are back home. It is such a blessing to read your posts again!

    [Thank you Tamra for writing and sharing. You bring up some good points - all which are deserving of thoughtful consideration. One way to look at things is to consider whether "they (things) own us or we own them". During the three weeks I spent in Israel, I was in a house with 45 other people - from babies to elders. I shared a room with five other women, two of which were teenagers. I had never experienced community living and as you can imagine time in the bathroom, showers and etc had to be organized and scheduled - we had to learn to wait our turn! A living environment, I had not experienced since dorm living in college! I have to admit it was both a blessing and a trial. It made me realize how set in my ways I am and how much I dislike not having what I want, when I want it. And, I was not the only one who felt that way. I remember a number of discussions during which we all admitted how tough living in the house was - and, how hard it would be if we were to lose our current comfortable standard of living. Could we endure it? More importantly could we do it with joy as the book of James describes. Another good question ..... Keeping you in prayer Tamra! May the Lord bless you and sustain you this season as only he can do. Counting it all joy! Cindy]

  2. This whole time of year has been taken over by those who long ago infiltrated “Christianity”, most of it looks like insanity to me. As for me I have been stepping away from anything that has blended itself into the story line. The Fuel Project has helped me to understand how the devil has been using “the church” to propagate his message. The fifth column attack. To rise up within. We have all been made to feel as though we need to accept the “differences” in each other. The Word of God makes it clear that we are at times to reprove.

    Don’t think of it as rocking the boat, see it as a test of sea worthiness of the vessel.

    As for Lot’s wife? Is it not ironic that she was turned into the thing that we are called to be? Salt of the earth. Her testimony still bears witness in the Word.


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