Thankfully, saying goodbye also means saying hello.
Leaving means arriving.
Letting go means receiving more.
Dying means being re-born.
One door closes and another opens.
A couple months ago, I wrote those words on the last page of my journal—the journal I’d written in for four years. During that time, I’d recently heard that I was moving back to the States, and I was trying desperately to find some hope in the sadness.
God just planted those words in my mind, reminding me that it wasn’t all over. Yes, I would be saying goodbye, and leaving, but that didn’t mean I would have nothing. First of all, I would still have Him. And I would also have new friends and experiences, without even entirely losing my old ones! Yes, my life would be different, and it would be hard, but it could be a good different. And I would have to trust that He knew what he was doing, that something good would come out of it all. I have to believe that something beautiful will rise from the ashes…that from the tears, something new will grow.
Sometimes we just have to let go, and trust that our hands will be filled again. But the hardest part is believing that so completely that we will indeed be willing to let go. A couple weeks ago, I went on a retreat with the worship teams of my church. One of the activities I had to do was a trust fall. I had to stand on a stack of chairs, with my hands tied, and fall backwards onto the clasped hands of two rows of people. I was terrified! Did I trust the people standing there to catch me? Yes! But there was still a nagging thought in the back of my mind. What if they don’t? Okay, so maybe I didn’t trust them…at least not completely! The hardest part was forcing myself to actually lean back and fall. That’s why I decided to get it over with as quickly as possible. When I called, “Here I come!” I fell, as in that second! And guess what? They caught me! Actually, I just laid there for a moment with my eyes closed…my thoughts at that point were, Wait, am I actually alive? Oh, I am! And God is a lot stronger than the people who caught me!
Psalms 81:10 says:
"I, the LORD, am your God, Who brought you up from the land of Egypt; Open your mouth wide and I will fill it.
And Psalm 126:2 says:
“Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy; then they said among the nations, “The LORD has done great things for them.”
So yes, it’s hard to let go. And I know I’m going to struggle with that more and more as my leaving date draws closer…but I want to be willing to be empty, if only for the joy of being filled up again by my Father!