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Painful Good-byes

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Painful Good-byes

This is a little part of a devotional I shared with the YWAM Idaho staff earlier this summer. The lecture portion of the Bible School for the Nations had ended, and we said “good-bye” to those heading off on outreaches overseas. Good-byes always make me rather contemplative and journally. I just never got around to posting it on the blog, but it seems relevant now in light of saying more “good-byes” as we moved to Oregon.


We meet a lot of people in YWAM, make a lot of friends, and say a lot of “goodbyes.”

As a new school starts, I look forward to getting to know the students. Suddenly the school is over, and I realize I didn’t get to know them as well as I thought I would. I end up saying, “good-bye” with mixed feelings.

Sometimes the regret that I didn’t get to know them better, hurts more than the pain of how much I’ll miss them.

Sometimes I say, “I’ll miss you” in the sense that I’ll notice their absence, but life goes on, more people will come, seasons change, etc. If I had gotten to know them better,  saying “good-bye” would be more painful, especially with someone who I might never see again this side of heaven. But it’s YWAM so who knows, we probably will see them again someplace.

Then there’s the people I’ve said “bye” to over and over, and it gets easier every time. I’m confident I’m going to see them again. It’s no big deal to say “bye” to other YWAM Idaho staff as they head off on outreach. We’ve said “good-bye” several times already, only to run into each other again, someplace on the road across the USA, or while traveling through Asia, or when they get back to Idaho. I always looked forward to seeing them again, and all the time I’ll have to spend with them, but it goes fast, and suddenly they are leaving again. I haven’t made an intentional effort to invest in those relationships, because we have all the time in the world. 

There’s a pendulum of “I’m never going to see you again, so I don’t intentionally invest in this relationship” and “we have all the time in the world, so I don’t intentionally invest in this relationship.” But either way, I need to be intentional about investing in relationships, or just have no friends of the rest of my life.

You can avoid the pain of saying, “good-bye” only by forfeiting the joy of friendship.

I want to feel both the pain and the joy!

Becky is wife to Duane, mama to "Monkey-girl" and baby "Lioness" aka "PipSqueek." She is the administrative powerhouse for YWAM Bend and keeps our team grounded and organized. Her hope is to inspire and encourage other mamas in their journey to raise healthy, thriving families.
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12 Duane + becky graduationBend family team