Not “goodbye” — just “see you later”
To me, “goodbye” suggests I will never see the person again. That’s a sad thought, so I hate “goodbyes”.
But what if we knew we’d be together again? Then it would be more true — and less sad — to say, “See you later”. That happier thought is the idea behind this song. Please give it a listen and come back for more.
“Goodbye” carries different meanings. Sometimes it means you don’t expect to see the person ever again.
“See you later” indicates you expect to see them again sometime in the future.
Back in the 1500’s “godbwye” was said as a parting blessing. It was short for “God be with ye!” “Godbwye” became our “goodbye”. It’s nice to think of “goodbye” as a blessing. But since our modern “goodbye” sometimes carries the idea we may never see each other again, I am careful when I say it. It can be a little harsh.
Recently I was faced with saying goodbye to a lot of dear friends from work. As I churned on how to say it, this song bubbled up. The song softens the sadness “goodbye” can carry by drawing on the comfort in I Thessalonians 4: “…and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.”
I just quoted “so shall we ever be with the Lord”.
Question: “We who?”
Answer: Everyone who opts in.
What a joy to know that a part of God’s promise for the future includes being with the Lord and with all the loved ones who “opted in” to this new life when they learned they had that choice.
Because of events recorded in Genesis 3 we were all born “opted out”. People who don’t opt-in don’t get to be part of that wonderful promise in I Thessalonians.
God SO LOVES that He sent Jesus to rescue us, so we could live with them forever. Jesus’s amazing life, death, and resurrection opened the door to everlasting life for all who receive him. One of his many titles in the Bible (and used in our song) is “Author and finisher of faith”. Jesus’s successes have made it possible for people to opt in by confessing Jesus as Lord and by believing God raised him from the dead.
Those that opt in are the “we” in “so shall we ever be with the Lord”.
If this is goodbye …
When leaving someone we know will be THERE— forever with the Lord — we see and celebrate a deeper meaning in the parting words, “see you later”.
When leaving someone we are not so sure about, we might pause. Before saying “goodbye”, how about asking “Do you know the Lord?”
God bless you lots!
LYRICS: Right At Home With You
Song by Dale Reichel
Dedicated to my friends at work
Many happy days together
Pressing work to do
Every eye fixed on the Author
I’ve felt right at home with you
This world’s not my home
I’m just passing through
But I’ve loved our time together
I feel right at home with you
To each of us time happens
Pack a box, change a view
But our eyes stay on the Author
So I’m right at home with you
That brightest day is coming
We’re soon done passing through
All that time to be together
And I’ll be right at home with you.
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See you later?
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