Wednesday, November 7, 2007

To Say Hello is to say Good-bye

Some good friends of mine are in the air right now, on their way back to South Africa. They have quite a long trip, considering they left yesterday. They are traveling with their nearly one year old son. Good luck to them!

They were here for three years. During those three years, they worked incredibly hard to acculturate. They started their family. They put everything they had into planting a cell church and living in America. But as the time came for them to renew their visas, circumstances were such that it was time for them to go home.

I feel really blessed to have known them for the past bit. Their adaptation to California made my adaptation to California seem not so strange. They love God and they showed it in everything they did. They opened up and they shared their lives. They offered friendship.

In some ways, I feel blessed to have dear friends (and family!) all over the world. In other ways, it's hard, because when the time comes to say good-bye, you know things will never be the same. You may email, facebook, and stay in touch, but you will never again share the same life. If you know what I mean.

Life changes. Friends come and go. And there's sorrow and joy in the hellos and good-byes. Sometimes, I like to imagine heaven as the place where the fragmented pieces of our lives come together and are made whole. Where the body of Christ is truly made one. Where the hard decisions to obey in this life pay out in the reward of seeing our Father. And the light of His face illuminates the whys behind the suffering.

For now, to choose to love is to embrace pain. To hold the broken, the lost, the lonely in our hearts is to suffer with them. To say hello is to one day say good-bye.


Cristy said...

Beautiful Amy!

Thomas said...

Great post Amy!!

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