Parting is Bittersweet

Blessed were we for spending time with our loved ones, hearing their laughter, watching their joy, visiting with friends, sitting through English church services, and being personally reminded of the prayers of the saints.

But then, once again…

…we saw our parents cry, hugged college kids goodbye, listened to the lamentations of our children as we flew away, and are re-adjusting to life in our host country after having re-adjusted a few weeks ago to stateside living.

And again we put our hand to the plow without looking back.

It’s never easy, but easy is not what life is about.

Hudson Taylor, missionary extraordinaire, shares his own sorrow:

My beloved mother came to see me off from Liverpool. Never shall I forget that day…we had to say goodbye, never expecting to meet on earth again. For my sake she restrained her feelings as much as possible. I stood alone on deck, and she followed the ship as we moved towards the dock gates. As we passed through, and the separation really commenced, I shall never forget the cry of anguish wrung from that mothers heart. It went through me like a knife.

Even heroes hurt.

What was your greatest sorrow?

Maybe you are a missionary who wasn’t able to return to your home country for the holidays but remember all to well the pain of that first leaving.

What is your greatest sorrow?

Hudson continues:

I never knew so fully, until then, what God so loved the world meant. And I am quite sure that my precious mother learned more of the love of God to the perishing in that hour than in all her life before.

For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son. I wonder, did God hurt too?


quotes from “A Retrospect” by Hudson Taylor


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