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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of "A Man is Known by the Company He Keeps" (without using the actual phrase). (01/31/08)

TITLE: Moving Days
By Joanne Sher


"It's not going to work." Exhausted from another day in the pasture, he plopped onto his mat beside his wife.

Judith began scratching his back. "What's the matter?"

"We're going to have to leave."

Judith looked into her husband's eyes. "Again?"

He nodded. "And this time, without the family."

"You're kidding."

"Wish I were."

She sighed. "He's been like a father to you. We've prospered since you started working alongside him. How can you even consider leaving?"

"The land can't support us both. It's practically decimated already. If we travel together again, in no time we'll be in the same situation. My uncle will bring it up in a day or so, and if he doesn't, I will."

Judith leaned into her husband's chest and he wrapped his arms around her.

"It will be hard on the girls especially."

Judith nodded. "Being around their grandparents has been good for them."

He bit his lip. "But it can't be helped. Now, don't worry yourself, Judith. It will all work out."

Judith walked toward the tent flap. "Have you thought about where we'd go?"

He turned toward her. "Not really. Probably should, eh?"

"Might be good."

He walked toward her, took her hand, and escorted her from the tent. The sun was disappearing beyond the horizon. While her husband watched the sunset, Judith's eyes were fixed eastward.

"What if we relocated near Zoar? The land is lush, and the cities quite lavish."

He shifted his gaze toward the plains of Jordan. "The land certainly is thriving. I worry about the people in that region, though." He rubbed his chin.

"Oh, they wouldn't dare harm us, with all your wealth and power." Judith grinned, batting her eyelashes. "And think how much richer we could be with all that grazing land."

"What about the girls? Not sure that kind of influence would be good for them."

Judith snickered. "You let me worry about the children. I'll make sure no harm is done. Think about our lives, our comfort, if we settled there."

"Maybe you're right." He smiled. "It would certainly be a good life."

So Lot chose for himself the whole plain of the Jordan and set out toward the east. The two men parted company: Abram lived in the land of Canaan, while Lot lived among the cities of the plain and pitched his tents near Sodom.*

"But flee there quickly, because I cannot do anything until you reach it."*

Lot knew the angel meant business. He and his companion had practically dragged him, Judith and the girls (ladies, really; though they were still his little girls) out of their homes, out the city gates of Sodom, and toward Zoar - to save them from destruction, they'd said.

Lot was certainly glad Judith had kept her promise. Despite the city's evil and corruption, his daughters had remained pure and obedient. Their betrothed husbands, on the other hand, wouldn't come along, choosing to distrust their father-in-law's doomsday warning.

Perhaps my daughters will be virgins forever. Lot sighed.

Upon reflection, he was glad to be getting out. The profits had been tremendous financially, but the corruption was starting to get to him - especially that incident earlier in the day with the angels. Yes, getting away would be economically devastating, but at least he had his family. He wasn't sure how Judith would adjust, however. He doubted her heart would ever leave the city, no matter its state, or where her physical body might be.

But Lot's wife looked back, and she became a pillar of salt.*

"We have to go, girls. It's no longer safe in Zoar. We must go to the mountains."

The youngest sobbed. "How will we live, father?"

Lot rubbed her back lovingly. "We'll be fine in the caves. They will keep us dry and protected."

"Father, where will we find husbands?" Lot's older daughter's eyes pierced his. "How will we preserve our family line?"

"I don't know, girls." Lot bit his lip. "I really don't know."

The girls both slowed and walked together, their father a few paces ahead. The older put her mouth to her sister's ear.

"Perhaps we'll have to take things into our own hands."

So both of Lot's daughters became pregnant by their father. The older daughter had a son, and she named him Moab; he is the father of the Moabites of today. The younger daughter also had a son, and she named him Ben-Ammi; he is the father of the Ammonites of today.*

Scripture references, in order:
Genesis 13:11-12
Genesis 19:22
Genesis 19:26
Genesis 19:36-38

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This article has been read 1373 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Catrina Bradley 02/07/08
This story is just divine! :) I love the relationship you've created between Lot and his wife. The Bible verses move the story along and set up the next scene nicely - well done. The ending drives home the point to be careful of who we associate with. No matter what our intentions, evil still infects us like a nasty virus. A lot of good stuff here. Excellent work!
Lynda Schultz 02/07/08
I'm with Catrina. You've done a great job bringing the story to life, creating depth in the characters—and driving home the lessons to be learned.
Ann Renae Hair02/07/08
You took me there again. Loved the format as well as the story. This one is just excellent!
william price02/10/08
Very interesting. You really brought the story alive and it was written very well. You definately have a gift for writing Bible stories and communicating them in a fresh and creative way.
God bless.
Patty Wysong02/10/08
Very nicely done. You brought this account to life in so many ways. This is a Great example of the topic!
Hanne Moon 02/10/08
I love the way you bring Bible characters to life! Your writing is clear and concise. Excellent choice for this week's topic.
Shelley Ledfors 02/10/08
I love how you bring a familiar story alive!
Jan Ackerson 02/10/08
Wonderful, Jo! It's like we're peeking behind the scenes of this familiar story, and it feels absolutely real.

I have trouble reconciling Lot's "pure" daughters with their scheming in the last vignette, but that's not really your fault...the story is what it is.

You're a gifted writer, and this was truly excellent.
Karen Wilber02/10/08
You've breathed life into the characters in this story and made them leap off the page as the real people that they are. It's all the little details that you add - like scratching the back. Well done.
Betty Castleberry02/10/08
Love the way you incorporated today's language into this piece. It made it real. The writing was great, too!
Sharlyn Guthrie02/10/08
The story fits this topic well, and your telling of it is very good. I especially like the first section. It really pulled me into the story.
LaNaye Perkins02/10/08
I agree, you definately do a fantastic job of bringing Bible stories to life. Well Done!
Holly Westefeld02/10/08
This is a good example of the topic.
At risk of being the odd one out, however, while the Bible passages did, indeed, provide transitions, I did not find them all that smooth.
Joy Faire Stewart02/10/08
You have a special gift for bringing Bible stories to life. So much scripture had to be covered for this story and you captured the sad tale perfectly.
Beth LaBuff 02/10/08
This is beautiful! You've captured two moving days in Lot's life. I was curios where you got Lot's wife's name from? :) I (for one) really liked the interspersed Bible verses. It authenticates your story. Your writing is so creative with this. Very well done!!
Dee Yoder 02/11/08
The verses you used between the story vignettes were just the right introductions to the next scenes. Realistic and believable characters brought this story to life.
Laury Hubrich 02/11/08
Very nice account of this Biblical time in history. I love when you help the scriptures come to life even more! Thank you, Jo!
Verna Cole Mitchell 02/11/08
This vivid presentation of a Bible story was so very interesting. Your characterization is superb.
Loren T. Lowery02/11/08
You have such a natual knack for this genre. It just flows. It reads along the lines of a Pearl S. Buck or Leon Uris or even Colleen McCullough. Great job...and thanks for the Bible lesson!
Rita Garcia02/11/08
I would love to see all the stories, you have made come alive, together in a book! It would be sheer inspiration!
Beckie Stewart02/12/08
You are certainly and excellent writer and I love when stories are made alive in modern day ways. I was left with the sadness of this story too that the line is continued the way it was.
Marita Vandertogt02/12/08
You turned this story into kind of a 3D movie for me. Great dialogue and good tie in with the scriptures. Really nicely done!
Leigh MacKelvey02/12/08
Girlfriend, you outdo yourself with your Bible stories! I ,too, would love for you to write a book with all the stories you've already written and some new ones. I love the "today" voice of this one, it gives such a realism to the scriptures! Get busy with the book!
Kristen Hester02/12/08
Great story. You took us there. I especially enjoyed the beginning and figuring out we were in Lot's tent. I'm so glad you are a jewel. Congrats!
Sara Harricharan 02/13/08
New life to an old story! You are so good at doing this, I felt as if I were there and yes, you made them so real and so alive! I love the way you blended the verses with the little excerpts. Excellent writing! I enjoyed all of it. ^_^
Debbie Wistrom02/13/08
No red ink here! Great retelling of a story so on topic.
Lyn Churchyard02/14/08
What an excellent take on the topic. Unusual, but so real in the characterisations. It made me go back and read the Biblical account again. It breathed new life into the account of Lot and his family. Thank you Jo, for a job well done.
william price02/14/08
Congrats, Jo-anne for writing one of the most intersting, creative and bravest entries of the week. Inspiring. God bless.
Edy T Johnson 02/14/08
While I'm not really a fan of "fictionalized Bible stories," you sneaked up on me! I didn't realize what I was reading until you already had me hooked, so of course I had to read it all. Great job!

Thank you for leaving a comment on my entry, too. I appreciate you!
LauraLee Shaw02/15/08
From beginning to end, this piece was a jewel. Your ending was just perfect. You really made the biblical account come alive for me. I know God will use this for His great purposes in the future.