Monday, May 16, 2022

Orange Moon Monday, May 16, 2022 "The Sacrifice of Goodbye"

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…

"The Sacrifice of Goodbye"


     Frances's dear friend and colleague Ashlee has accepted a new position as nurse manager in her hometown hospital.  They worked together for the last time last night, and of course, their farewell this morning brought many tears and the sadness of knowing they will not work together again, or often see each other.

   The Bible does not directly speak of what the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit experienced when the Lord Jesus Christ left Heaven and came to earth to fulfill God's redemptive purposes.  I suspect the omission exists because we could not begin to understand the emotions and sensibilities that flowed from the perfection of love that exists within the triune being of our Creator.  Or perhaps we can, at least to some degree.

   "And they all wept sore, and fell on Paul's neck, and kissed him, sorrowing most of all for the words which he spake, that they should see his face no more" (Acts 20:37-38).

    The Apostle Paul greatly endeared himself to the Ephesians, teaching, encouraging, and exhorting them to grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus.  When he realized he might never see the Ephesians again, he called their elders together to warn them about future challenges, and also to bid them farewell.  Grieving tears and physical expressions of how dear Paul and the Ephesians were to one another flowed in the holy moment.  The poignancy of the passage often makes me think of the greater farewell mentioned above, again, when the Lord Jesus left Heaven and came to earth for our sakes.

    Might all our farewells, including today's sad goodbye experienced by Frances and Ashlee, offer at least hints of the sacrifice God made to redeem us from our sins?  We rightly emphasize the cross because without it, there could be no fulfillment of our Lord's redemptive purposes.  "Without shedding of blood is no remission" (Hebrews 9:22).  However, the sacrifice God knew involved far more than Calvary.  The eternal and infinite Christ left the direct presence of His Father to enter into our direct presence.  Certainly, the Father was with Him during His earthly lifetime, but not in the same way He had been "from everlasting" (John 8:29; Psalm 90:2).  We can never comprehend what this involved and meant in the heart of an infinite God.  However, our own farewells may allow us to feel a portion of what our Lord knew when the time came to leave Heaven and come to earth.

   Too much mystery prevents us from further speculation.  We can be sure, however, that God knows about farewells.  He has felt what it is like to say goodby to a loved one.  He knows it far more than do we ourselves.  So, when we must part from someone dear to us, we can be sure our Father knows how to comfort our hearts.  We can also know He loves us so dearly that He was willing to offer the sacrifice of goodbye to One, in order to "bring many sons unto glory" and to one day welcome us with the greeting of grace: "Enter thou into the joy of Thy Lord" (Hebrews 2:10; Matthew 25:21).  Yes, God knows about farewells.

"In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him."
(I John 4:9)

Weekly Memory Verse
   "In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him."
(I John 4:9)



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