I’ve always struggled with goodbyes. Whether it was ending a phone call, leaving a social gathering, or saying goodbye to friends across the globe, I have always wrestled with how to process the concept of goodbye. Whether it ends in me choking down tears and giving goodbye hugs, or emotionally shutting down and not processing the depths of the goodbye until months later, I HATE letting go.
This season in the Freedom Center Academy has been the sweetest, most restorative, transformative, and purest pursuit of Jesus I have ever experienced. The friendship, the literal brotherhood, that has formed between myself and the other students and friends at Freedom Center Church has been unmatched by any other relationship. There’s something completely life altering about surrounding yourself with people who love you deeply, refine you, encourage you, and pursue the Father with every ounce of their being. God has used this program to truly bring me from death to life, refine me in ways I didn’t know needed refining, to take me so much deeper than I even knew was possible, and to challenge me and test my faithfulness.
Letting go of this season is easily the most heartbreaking thing God has called me to release. I love my people. I love this place. There is something profound I have learned from each and every one of them that I will carry with me for the rest of my life. They all take up an invaluable place in my heart. This season has impacted my eternity and relationship with the Father. Letting go right now sucks. It is incredibly hard, and a part of me has already begun to grieve the loss of quality time with my best friends and the spiritual unity and intimacy we have with one another in pursuit of Jesus.
As it is, letting go is always hard. Even if it’s something negative. It is often easier to hurt than to heal. Letting go of sin, of pain, of brokenness, of bitterness, of trauma is hard. Letting go of close proximity friendships, a routine you love, of a church family that has given so much to you can suck. Surrender can suck. Once you get used to something, even pain, it can get comfortable but comfortable isn’t where we’re called, we’re called to obedience.
So, as I release the comfort of dwelling in this season, I am acting in obedience to the next thing God has called me to. I’m letting go. I’m saying goodbye, knowing that somehow, although I can’t fathom it, God has something even more profound for me in the future.
The end of this season reminds me of a recent set of memory verses:
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.”