A teary goodbye here is a joyous hello in heaven

Joan Clayton

“Someone is waiting for someone to leave or someone to arrive,” I thought. We were in an airport terminal. I looked around at the teary faces of people waiting to say the last goodbye. I also watched those happy expectant people waiting to hug with a “hello” for a loved one.

“How much longer Mommie?” a little jumping jack of a boy anxiously pulled his mother’s skirt. “When will I get to see my Daddy?”

“It won’t be long now,” his mother answered as the child hopped on one foot and then the other.

Another group, a grandfather maybe, along with a mother and daddy and other family members or friends all had a common interest. “We haven’t seen him since boot camp,” I heard the elderly man remark.

The countenance of the older travelers gave quizzical expressions. Were they wondering if this might be the last time to say goodbye? They held on to the moment, hugging and holding hands.

“Flight 591 will be boarding at Gate 5 momentarily,” a loudspeaker announced.

The departing ones held each other just a little tighter as they maneuvered toward the gate, but sounds of delight came from those who ran to meet the arrival of loved ones.

People arrived and departed. The apparent tears, the hugs, the handclasps, the endearing words … all revealed love from someone’s heart.

“Wouldn’t it be great,” I thought, “If all of us could be this loving every day. Would it not be wonderful to hold each moment as precious? The time we have is a precious moment because all too soon we must say “goodbye.”
Oh, but the joy of saying, “Hello!” The joy of expecting loved ones to come home. It’s delight and joyful expectations of that glad reunion.

“There’s Daddy!” The little boy ran to his Daddy shouting, “There’s my Daddy,” and his Daddy swooped the child up into his arms. This “living picture” reminded me of the greatest homecoming of all when this life is over.

When the child of God goes home, it is a “goodbye” here but a “hello” there. : “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints” (Psalm 116:15 KJV) Can you just imagine the homecoming of God’s child? Because of Jesus it will be a glad reunion!

It’s the power of the cross. Should we not be in joyful song? To think Jesus has conquered death for all those who will receive him. Is it not the greatest news ever known to mankind?

To gain understanding of this wonderful news of God reaching down to man and granting the choice for eternal life is blessed knowledge indeed.

Meanwhile, back on earth, he will never leave us. He is the Comforter, Savior, Redeemer, Protector and Healer…”a friend that sticketh closer than a brother!” (Proverbs 18:24)
On that glorious day when we shall meet him face to face, we shall all be changed in a twinkling of an eye and so shall we ever be with him.

God’s gift of time is a wondrous thing, yet time waits for no one. Today is the day to spread God’s love. Treasure every minute you have.

If you had only a few weeks or months to live, what changes would you make? Would you make each day count? Would the sky be bluer? Would you suddenly become aware of little things that mean so much? Would you speak of love and appreciation to others that oftentimes have been left unsaid?

This present moment is all we have to really live. Successful living comes when we make our days count. When it comes our time to make our heavenly flight we may say goodbye to those we leave, but as our middle son said to me when he left home, “Don’t cry Mom, a Christian never says goodbye for the last time.”

Remember, a “goodbye” here is just a “hello” there.