Why is it that goodbyes are so hard?
I know that they hurt because you won’t see that/those people for a while, but more likely than not, you will see them again. Right? I put forth that it is hard because in our heart of hearts, we know that it is possibly the last time we may see them. Morbid and depressing… perhaps, but if it is one thing I have learned, it is to always expect the unexpected.
I’ll give you a “for example.” No one believes that their house may burn down … it’s here one day and possibly gone the next. It happens. Now what do you do? Ok, how about this scenario? Someone tells you goodbye, and they leave your house. You have plans to get together in a few days, because it is the weekend. A few hours later the phone rings, and that person is gone. It just hits you right below the ribs and kind of makes you catch your breath. I love music and believe that it captures perfectly what we feel. Case in point, a song by a band called Greenwheel, “Breathe.”
Lyrics: “I’m alright… I’m alright… It only hurts when I breathe”
I firmly believe that we cannot know what loss feels like through simply thinking about it or reading about. We first must build and feel a real attachment to a person or persons, or pets for that matter. God was and is teaching this still. Thousands of years ago, in order to show us how he felt when he gave his son for us, he took a little lamb and used it to illustrate this point. His son, who was always there… a part of him… his family… had to leave.
So let’s look at what God did.
The Passover lamb was chosen, and then it was to be taken into the house. It was to live with the people of that household until the time it was to be sacrificed. It was not to be kept outside in a barn or a pen. It was to be brought into the home and attachment was to be formed to this little creature.
Exodus 12:1-7 (NASB)
The Passover Lamb
1Now the LORD said to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, 2“This month shall be the beginning of months for you; it is to be the first month of the year to you. 3“Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying, ‘On the tenth of this month they are each one to take a lamb for themselves, according to their fathers’ households, a lamb for each household. 4‘Now if the household is too small for a lamb, then he and his neighbor nearest to his house are to take one according to the number of persons in them; according to what each man should eat, you are to divide the lamb. 5‘Your lamb shall be an unblemished male a year old; you may take it from the sheep or from the goats. 6‘You shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month, then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel is to kill it at twilight. 7‘Moreover, they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel of the houses in which they eat it.
Let’s read between the lines. This little cute and fluffy lamb was taken in and made a part of the family. For about 2 weeks this little lamb was in the house. It played with the kids. It was around when the kids woke up and there when everyone went to bed. What happens at the end of the 14 days? It was killed. The blood was to be put on the two doorposts, and it was roasted and eaten.
Mean old God… cruel God… how could he do that?
Not to be mean, but are you feeling God on this topic now? His son is that lamb. He said, “Good Bye.” He let, and Christ volunteered, by the way, to be that lamb. He was part of a family… He became part of all of the families of man across this Earth, across time and space. That’s part of the reason that the song “Amazing Grace” means so much to people. It is amazing that Christ came down and struck a tent in human flesh, to be ‘killed’ to us in order to save us. If you haven’t come to this realization, look back in the Old Testament and the New, and know that when God is talking about the ‘Passover Lamb’, that this is Jesus.
It hurts more than anything to say goodbye to people. People that you have let into your life, and then have to let them leave, with the chance that you won’t see them again. The flip side of this is to totally insulate yourself, and never make kinships with people. And all I can say is, “What kind of life is that?”
In our heart of hearts, no matter your religion or lack thereof, we know that death waits for no man or woman. Our hope and the greatest gift after the grace gifted to us from God, is the gift of eternal life with our family, all the countless stars worth of them. Yes we will be separated, and no we do not know for how long, either here on Earth, people moving geographically, or via death and our homegoing, but we can rest in the promise that we will be reunited on that beautiful shore on the other side. Again… I go to music. Take this song by Jeremy Camp.
There will be a day with no more tears,
no more pain, and no more fears.
There will be a day, when the burdens of this place,
will be no more, we’ll see Jesus face to face.
Luke 23:42-43 (NASB)
42And he was saying, “Jesus, REMEMBER ME when You come in Your kingdom!” 43And He said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.”
We’ll see our brothers and sisters in heaven after we die, FACT. In his father’s house are many rooms. He has promised all of us a place in that house… we are going to be roommates. So, it hurts to let people go, and not necessarily go, but having to be separated… that’s a better term. We must be separated to learn what lose is, but glory to God it’s only temporarily. And although some maybe dreading to spend an eternity with me… all I can say is that I do grow on you… give it a few hundred years… maybe more.
Grace and much peace to you,