Awakening a Keen Observer

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Good good bye


I never liked Good-bye. My family always teased me that I would be the one to shed the tears when we left my Grandmother and Granddaddy in Virginia. And I did. I couldn't see if they were unhappy, and my mother always was, why they didn't cry too. I think for my Mother if I was crying she didn't have to...

Once when John and I had spent the summer with my parents in a Pastoral Hospital Training course CPE in Ohio as we left he said good-bye to the little boy who had lived next door to them and had played with us some. John said, Good by John Beryl we'll never see you again. I was so sad. I didn't think that was the right thing to say. But it was true because they were moving in a couple of months and we would not be back to Ohio before they left. There was the finality of it all.

And perhaps we need to, no not morbidly, think about how we leave people. What do we want to be our parting thought, or gift, or feeling as we leave them. We sing benedictions at the end of church that are meant as blessings to those with whom we've worshipped and blessing one another with them. We wave or beep the horn when we leave home and family some times.
But what if we blessed people, all the people we saw each day. God love you. I'm not even sure we have to say it outloud...because God hears the prayers of the heart. I've said to people I've just met in passing Have a happy life. But what if it was a true blessing.
Children who leave for school with a kiss, blessing, or a hug remind us of how good that feels. But, what if there isn't someone who is there to wish you well each morning, or greet you upon your return...welcome home. Perhaps we need to be for one another those who say Hello as well as those who say Good-bye.
One gentleman in the church in Utah always found me after services for a hug. I realized it might be the only hug he got all week. Everyone would be there in line shaking hands, but he would always hug me. hello...and good-bye...

We want good-good-byes...perhaps we would do well to use the other forms, adieu, or adios... Go with God.
Because that is what a good-good-bye is anyway... bless you...go with God.

God abide
Bobbie Giltz McGarey


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