GODSPEED

18 10 2009

It’s an old word with rich meaning.  It is used today in the context of wishing someone a successful, swift, and safe accomplishment of a task.  We hear the word used in launching military vessels and NASA space shuttle count downs.  It was a word used in Elizabethan English as a verbal sentiment desiring goodness and joy to be with a person.  “God speed you.”  The word is used twice the KJV (II John 10-11) as a warning not to give a voice of encouragement to those who are spreading  false doctrine about the person of Christ.  The word “God” or “speed” is not in the original Greek, but the word was used often at the time of translation as a salutation of good will.  Let me give a few thoughts before my intended purpose of invoking this not quite archaic word.

      1.   It is a good thing to wish a prosperous endeavor or journey to another.

            I know, “wishing” is not really a Christian idea.  It sounds like something that a genie in a bottle would grant.  I use it with the attitude of “Godspeed.”

      2.   It is better to ignore a person in whom we disagree than to be ugly with him.

            If you come to an impasse with a person concerning an issue that neither of you will compromise, it is better to ignore them than to fuel the fire with vicious words.  Instead of hypocritical words of kindness, just say nothing!

      3.   It is still a good idea to wish someone “Godspeed” if we desire what is best for them and stand beside them in their endeavor.

 

      Forget political correctness.  The attitude of kindness and support should supercede the trivialities of being offensive to an ungrateful minority.  Ninety-Nine percent of the people who hear this word would consider it spoken in good will with a sincere desire for God’s best.

      I am a volunteer Chaplain to a reserve unit of some of the best Soldiers that anyone could be privileged enough to serve.  They are “America’s Finest.”  In just a few weeks a contingent of them will be deployed to the Middle East to fulfill a mission in which they have been throughly trained and well qualified.  They are leaving families who are the unsung heroes of this current war.  These loved ones are not trained, but will cope the best they can and anxiously await the eventual homecoming.  They will suffer the absence of their spouses at birthdays, holidays, bereavements, soccer games, special moments, periods of loneliness, insecurity, and many more.  I stand beside the Soldiers.  I stand beside their mission.  I stand beside their families. 

      Godspeed.

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