Out of all of the words in the English language, this is the one that I can admit makes me feel so uncomfortable. I do not like saying goodbye or the whole process of leaving as it seems like such a sad word. There have been many people that I have said goodbye to this year, wishing that I could change the circumstances to just say "see you later" or something along those lines. Goodbye seems so final, so closed, so permanent.
My sister Elena is following her dream to become involved in the media industry. She's my "baby" sister, in her mid 20's, ready to make her mark on the world and impact others for God. She moved out of state to pursue that dream and is in Texas as a home base as she travels the US. I remember hugging her and not being able to say goodbye, knowing in my heart that she may never come "home" again.
Sometimes goodbyes are thrust upon you through the death of a friend; a friend of mine died due to suicide last month and I was forced to say goodbye without closure, without peace about her death, without seeing her that one more time. In saying goodbye, we turn ahead to what life has for us without that person in it anymore, physically or literally. Either way, it's not something I like too much, but it's a fact of life that with God's help I have learned to face.
When it's my turn to say goodbye to those I love, whether in moving away or in leaving this world when the LORD calls me home, I pray that in those goodbyes there are smiles amid the tears. I pray that my presence here made a difference in those who loved me, that my final hugs and words will bring glory to my Father and His Grace. In saying goodbye, may I remember that the legacy I leave will always remain in the hearts and lives of those I touched... and in that, there are no final goodbyes but only "I will see you later!"