Monday, September 10, 2012

Widow FAQ

QUESTION: Does it ever feel right to be a widow? I now feel as though I am only a partial person, yet somehow I manage to live a fairly normal life. How can that be?

ANSWER: These questions capture the incredulous feelings of a survivor: is it right that life goes on, that I manage in spite of this huge loss, that life looks fairly normal even though it's so very different?

There is hope, though, when we look at the situation in light of what the Bible says. From a human standard we simply can't say it's "right" to be a widow. But if we have given our life to Christ, we can understand that God is in control, He loves us supernaturally and we are safe in His hands. Nothing about our relationship to Christ has changed. He chose us and saved us as an individual-- not because we were married-- and He will continue to relate to us on an individual basis.

I read in I Corinthians 1:21 that God makes us stand firm in Christ, He has annointed us, He has set His seal upon us, He has put the Holy Spirit within us, and has guaranteed our redemption and eternal life to come. With credentials like that, I believe that when we find ourselves in any condition of life we can trust God that it is right--and although it's hard, we will get closer and closer to being at peace with our life. See Romans 8:35 and 37-39, too. Nothing can separate us from God and His love, and although we might not be able to humanly say it's "right" to be a widow, we can--in time--understand that with Christ, there's nothing wrong with being a widow.

This does take time, though. I can't tell you how often widows wonder at how "cut in half" they feel. I believe feeling "like a partial person" is perfectly normal, and even to be expected. Remember how in the garden of Eden God declared that man would be united with his wife and the two would "become one flesh?"

This is just my opinion, but maybe God meant that in more than just a sexual way. I think of how two branches of a vine can curl and twist around one another. If one of them were cut off, the other would surely suffer lack of support and a change in the flow of nutrients--it must physically grow over and heal before it can gain strength on its own. Yet to look at the vine, we hardly notice where the pruning has occurred and the other half removed.
Having a fairly normal life while feeling like half a person is like having the branches of a vine pruned back. The vine will recover and grow even more fruitful, life will go on as normal, but it's very different. And healing is essential.
 
I used to hate that word "healing." Grief is not a disease! It's not a sickness! But now I realize healing is essential because widowhood is a severing of those lives that have grown together and twined around each other like a vine. The surviving branch will grow back stronger and more fruitful than ever, but first it must heal. A key to remember during this process are the words of Christ, "I am the vine; you are the branches . . ."
 
If we cling to Christ, if we choose to draw life and recovery from Him, there will certainly come a day when we will be whole again.
I hope this has been an encouraging answert hat gives you hope. God has good plans for you, He loves you, He sees you and He stands by to help you. ferree

4 comments:

  1. Thank-youI needed that this morning. It is 22 months today since I last kissed Jake and told him I love him. I miss him terribly,but in some strange way,life is good. Sometimes I feel guilty when I have a good time,yet I do know that I am here for a reason and I want my life to glorify God.

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  2. My re-posting this today is obviously a touch to you from the Lord, Ruth! God does have a good plan and purpose for you, and its true--we still miss our husbands but the Lord has left us here to glorify him. Keep on keeping on dear friend!

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  3. I echo Ruth's feelings. My Smmy has been gone 20 months and I miss him so much . I am pressing on into my journey. I try to be uplifting to others but I hurt so much. I do need that healing from the gtief. I love your e-mails. They bless me alot.

    Martha

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  4. Thank you so much I just read this again.blessed me on Monday and today. I am hanging on to what you said ie we will be whole again and the branch left can even be more fruitful. I so look forward to that day though I often wonder if its possible. Coming from you and knowing God is a God of unlimited possibilities I believe..Lord help my unbelief.can't wait for this weight of grieve to be lifted. Halima

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