This is a song that captures the raw emotion and reality of the loss of a loved one.
The song begins with the mental picture of a family perhaps joined together to say their last goodbyes to someone that they recently lost or who is near to going home to be with the Lord. Although starting on a somber note, the song changes to a more relaxed and slightly memory-filled progression – almost as if you were looking through a photo album of someone’s entire life, seeing all that they had accomplished and experienced during their long (or short) life. Here, in my mind, I picture the good memories of this life being remembered. Events like the day they met their husband or wife. Their wedding day. The birth of their first child.
As the song continues, the music gains some depth and seriousness as reality is brought back into focus. This could be the procession of a funeral or perhaps the more serious times of this person’s life being played out in memory. As this section leads into the next, we hear a triumphant chorus ring out as this life enters into a glorious eternity in Heaven with Jesus!
As the song begins to round towards completion, we hear the tenderness of the piano, strings & oboe paint a picture of that final ‘goodbye’ being shared by the family.
The song ends on a slightly somber note again; not because there is no hope, but because there is a very real sense of loss and sorrow that still exists. As a Christian, I know where I am going and where those who know Jesus Christ will go when we pass from this life. This incredible reality of a joyful eternity doesn’t mean that our hearts don’t hurt or we shouldn't grieve when we lose someone we love. The song ends with this fact in mind.