Marriage Missions International

For Widows and Widowers Considering Remarriage

Photo credit: vishwaant / Foter / CC BY

Photo credit: vishwaant / Foter / CC BY

After your spouse has been deceased for a period of time, you may think about the possibility of once again sharing your life with another. In practically every interview we conducted with widows and widowers of all ages, the question of remarriage was a common topic of conversation.

…This [article] is designed to give helpful information to you who are presently planning a remarriage or will become involved later with a person who may eventually become your new spouse. If you ever think of remarrying, read this material carefully. Even if remarriage is one of your major priorities and you feel it is God’ will to follow this goal, there are numerous practical aspects to keep in mind.

Whatever you do, be sure you’re guided by the Scriptures in your pursuits. Surround yourself with prayer to help you follow God’s will. We believe that God is Master of every facet of life and if you believe in his Word, every major step you take —including remarriage —will be directed by him.

As part of the research for writing this [article], we interviewed survivors who have married so that we could list criteria to consider before remarrying. Examine each item carefully. If you have difficulty resolving any of the questions posed, you need to examine more carefully your reasons for remarriage and your overall goals. The questions below are not listed in any order of importance, since each is vital to the success of your new marriage.

How long should you wait before you remarry? The answer depends on a number of circumstances. Some authorities say that it should be at least a year after the death of your mate before you make any major decision, which certainly includes marriage. If the death of your mate was sudden, the resolution of your grief may be particularly difficult, and you may wait several years before even considering the idea of remarriage. Conversely, if your mate had a lingering illness and you went through a partial process of grief before his or her death, you may be comfortable in remarrying in less than a year. If this is true, the timing of your marriage may be of secondary importance. We are convinced, however, that resolving the answers to the next questions could take several months, or even years, for some individuals.

…If there are children, how do they feel about your remarrying? This issue was a serious one for Rita and me because she had four adult children and I had three. At first my children had only a slight acquaintance with Rita, and her children did not know me at all. After studying this question carefully and consulting counselors and trusted friends, we took a path that has been reasonably successful in establishing a harmonious family relationship. We recommend the following guidelines for your consideration:

1. Introduce your prospective spouse to your children as early as possible. Much of any initial negative reaction is because the individuals really do not know each other. If possible, let all the children in both families get acquainted before any marriage plans are announced. When you meet the children of your intended, be as natural as possible. Do not try to be someone you are not. They might not accept you completely, but if you show yourself to be a “phony,” they will be even more suspicious. Especially if the children are young, respect them for who they are and be sensitive to their grief over the loss of the deceased parent, which may still be very painful to them.

Avoid recommendations about child-rearing to your intended at this stage. If his or her children make you uneasy and uncomfortable for any major reason, you had better have a serious conversation about your feelings. Even though it may be hard to accept, you will not only become involved with is or her children and other family members as well.

2. Although the feelings of adult children regarding your remarrying must be considered, the final decision must be made by both of you according to the best interests of all. Some children may be negative toward any relationship you enter because they may still be economically and emotionally dependent on you as a parent an feel isolated and neglected if you remarry or even consider doing so. A few people find it difficult to make adjustments in their life and always prefer the status quo. On the other hand, if your children are opposed because of some specific loving concerns, consider these aspects carefully. While you should be concerned about the feelings of your children, you need to take charge of your life and do what you believe is best of you.

The most logical step is to discuss your children’s reactions with your pastor or another counselor and some trusted friends who will keep the children’s misgivings confidential. You need the opinions of persons who are somewhat detached from your situation and can give you objective advice about your relationship.

Once you’re comfortable with the decision you have made, announce your intentions to your children privately and ask for their love, prayers, and goodwill. After you decide to remarry, most loving children will want your marriage to succeed and will be supportive. If not, the passage of time usually helps people adjust to new situation.

3. Absorbing young children into a new marriage may be a major source of conflict for both of you. When there are young children involved, assuming the stepfather’s or stepmother’s role may be demanding and traumatic. We have observed that a husband and wife may agree on nearly everything except how to raise children, their own or someone else’s! It’s nearly impossible to remain detached from such problems once a couple is united in a remarriage.

Often the family situation is still more challenging when you marry a divorced person and bring a child who has been living with the ex-spouse into your new home. Some children of divorced parents are very troubled and have a great capacity to spread discord wherever they go. Consider these possibilities seriously before remarrying.

Before you enter into a marriage where young children are involved, it would be advisable to air your concerns with your pastor and/or trusted friends. Don’t let the present grief of your mate’s death cause you to enter into a new marriage arrangement that is a profound risk for all involved.

What is the financial status of each of you? Of all the issues that may imperil a marriage, the subject of money can be the most deadly. The issues below must be studied and resolved before the marriage takes place.

Agreement must be reached if one of you has much more money than the other. There must be a clear understanding of how finances will be divided. There probably would not be a 50-50 split of assets in this circumstance. If this is a potential trouble spot, identify it early in a relationship.

A definite plan must be established with regard to spending money —whether it be for yourselves, children’s needs, recreation, vacations, or eating away from home. If you are planning to establish a joint checking account (with or without equal contributions to the account), there should be a clear understanding about which expenditures will be made from that source. Unless such a decision is reached, there is considerable potential for disagreement and stress.

A program must be agreed on with regard to checking, savings, and various investment accounts. The exact ownership and plans for these accounts should be described in detail in a prenuptial agreement (especially if either of you has children). Normally it is recommended that each of you keep your own name on any savings or investments that were yours before the remarriage. Decide whether the beneficiaries of the accounts will be your new mate or the children of one of you. Sometimes joint checking accounts are established with the understanding that both parties will contribute agreed-on amounts each month. For your mutual protection, property bought jointly after marriage should be stated on the title as “joint tenants with right of survivorship.”

Should you have a prenuptial agreement and new wills? The establishment of a prenuptial agreement before a second marriage is advisable, especially if there are children involved and either of you have various financial holdings. In the event of a divorce or death of one of you, each mate needs to have a clear understanding of his or her legal rights at that point.

New wills are an absolute must so that each of you will know which possessions will be yours on the death of the other and to formalize your wishes regarding any other separate or joint heirs. Be sure that your will mentions that a prenuptial agreement has been made. If it does not, there can be considerable heartache for all concerned. Your county’s legal society can recommend local lawyers who specialize in premarital agreements and wills.

Are you sexually compatible? One of the most important aspects of any marriage is the degree of sexual satisfaction attained by each member in the relationship. Your need for sexual gratification probably did not terminate at the death of your mate. Despite myths to the contrary, there is a substantial body of research data to show that the great majority of physically and mentally healthy persons remain sexually active up to age eighty and even beyond.

If you intend to remarry, discuss your degree of sexual interest and your preferences in this area with your prospective mate. There is potential for a great amount of stress and difficulty if a person who has previously had a very active sex life marries someone who has little interest in sexual intimacy or has different ideas of how to express that intimacy. One of the most authoritative books regarding this matter is Sex over 40 by Saul H. Rosenthal, M.D. Another interesting publication is Common Sense Christianity by Gerald Mann, who devotes an entire chapter to “great Sex for Christians.”

What are your religious beliefs? Of all the questions cited so far, this one may have the greatest potential for trouble between a couple. Resolve this issue before you pursue a relationship to any great depth. Our studies of this question have led us to some rather firm beliefs about related concerns.

Basic spiritual values. If persons of any age (especially older) have never been interested in such matters as church attendance, tithing, prayer, witnessing, and the need to be saved, there is a good prospect that they will not embrace all or even some of these aspects just because they get married. We hope that they will change their lives. However, they probably will not.

Evangelism in a marriage. The Bible tells us not to be “unequally yoked” with a nonbeliever (2 Corinthians 6:14). To disobey this admonition may be an invitation to a stress-filled and unsuccessful marriage. Never enter a marriage with the expectation that your fervent witnessing will eventually lead your souse to accept the gospel truths.

What will be your living arrangements? There are many questions that need to be answered in this arena.

1. Will you live in the other’s home or your own?
2. Will you both sell your houses (or move from your apartments) and buy or rent a new dwelling place that is jointly “yours”?
3. Will you have his or her children (and/or your own) living with you?
4. Will you use some of the furniture of each mate or buy everything new?
5. How will you dispose of items not needed in the new home?

Our experience and survey data show that there are no clear-cut, desirable answers for each of the previous questions. …Each situation has to be judged individually to arrive at a plan that will be satisfactory for both of you. If either of you is unhappy about living in the other person’s house, you had best make other living arrangements.

Do either of you have family or financial obligations? Discuss these details completely before the marriage takes place. Jo and Linda were married some time after the deaths of their mates. About one month after the marriage ceremony, during a casual dinner conversation between them, Linda discovered the following information about Joe’s commitments:

  • He had told his mother she could live with them sometime during the next two years instead of going to a nursing home.
  • He was giving about $200 a month to his unmarried (and usually unemployed) son, who lived in the next town.
  • He had taken limited bankruptcy three years ago and still owed creditors over $20,000.

Obviously this information was most upsetting to Linda. These facts, along with Joe’s refusal to compromise on certain religious issues, caused their later divorce. There should be no secrets of this type between two persons contemplating marriage!

Will you avoid comparison of your deceased mate with your new one? You will never find a mate exactly like your first. Your new husband or wife will no doubt have some good (and bad) qualities your first mate did not have, and vice versa. Do not place your former mate on a pedestal and challenge your new partner to be the same. Leaving the deceased’s picture on the wall and constantly remarking that he or she “was so good” about doing such-and-so is not conducive to a harmonious second marriage. Conversely, there is no profit in amplifying all the faults of your former spouse. Be fair and objective about your first mate, without making direct or indirect comparisons to your new or intended partner. What happened in your first marriage is history —let it go at that.

If you have grown children, what will be your contact with them after you marry? Your marriage will be a major adjustment for your adult children. If you follow some rather simple guidelines, your new marriage can be very successful.

First of all, let your children know that you still love them and that they should feel welcome to call you and see you within the bounds of common courtesy and good sense. Having a new husband or wife should not cause you to be isolated from your children, even if they have misgivings about the marriage.

Second, do not go to your children with every problem or conflict that you have with your new spouse, at least until all other avenues for resolution have been explored. Even then it may be counterproductive to do so. In every disagreement have a private talk with your mate and try to resolve conflict at that level. Playing “mind games” with each other’s children is a sure way of breeding major problems for a marriage.

How will you manage family traditions and holidays? The first Thanksgiving and Christmas following a second marriage calls for much planning and discussion. There are many relatives to consider, and a calm, well-developed plan can avoid much unneeded stress. Keep as many of your own family traditions as you can, but at the same time be ready to compromise to include your new mate’s relatives. You may need to have two Thanksgiving meals —or one big one for all. …Can your traditions and celebrations be exactly the same as with your first mate? Of course not. If both you and your new mate flexible and willing to try new plans, family gatherings can be harmonious, fun-loving, and wholesome for all.

To summarize, we want to emphasize that remarriage is not necessary or desirable for everyone whose mate has died. If you ask God’s blessings and are led to the proper person, however, a new marriage can be highly rewarding.

There were other valuable points made, that we weren’t able to include, from the chapter of the book, Coping with Life after Your Mate Dies by Donald C. Cushenbery and Rita Crossley Cushenbery published by Baker Books. If you know of someone who needs help in coping with the death of their spouse, or if you have unresolved issues from your own spouse’s death, please consider obtaining this book because you could find it very helpful. It is written to be read quickly and easily at a stressful time.

- ALSO-

For further insights on this topic, please click onto the links below to read articles posted on the “I Do! Take Two” web site:

10 STEP GUIDE TO MARRYING A WIDOWER

ADVICE FOR WIDOWS AND WIDOWERS CONSIDERING REMARRIAGE

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Comments

106 Responses to “For Widows and Widowers Considering Remarriage”
  1. SJ says:

    (SINGAPORE)  Hi I am a widow of 5 months. I have two young children aged 8 and 4 years. I had a healthy and solid relationship with my husband. He was a wonderful husband, a dear friend and a very good father.

    Although I feel it is not time for me to enter another relationship, I would like to do so in the near future, reason being, the current environment my girls are growing in, is one that has a strong female dominance. I am prayerful to our Lord to provide me with a good Christian man so that my girls can re-experience what it is like to have a father, a male figure to protect and care for them.

    However, I personally feel that finding such a man in an Oriental/Asian culture will be an uphill task. Realistically speaking, even if you do eventually find a man whom you can connect spiritually or mentally; the other issue will be, if he does truly care and love your young children unconditionally as his own. I appreciate any comments on my thoughts.

    • Cindy Wright says:

      Bless your heart! I’m so sorry for your loss. And it’s a huge one –to say the least. And 5 months… this is all so new and fresh and painful –like a new deep wound you are tending to. My heart hurts with yours… so, so much hurt and pain. I’m so sorry you are going through this.

      Please know that while 5 months seems like an eternity to you (and it is in human terms for one who is reeling from the hurt), 5 months is still relatively new in light of the very big decisions you are and will be making, as for the course of your life with your girls.

      Whether you realize it or not, I sense your emotions and your logic and capability to make decisions in the area of bringing a life mate into your life and your home, is sliding all over the place right now. The beginning paragraph of your comment and the last paragraph shows that. And that’s not at all unusual. Right now, you are learning a new “normal” –one that is a horrific challenge for you and your precious children. Your life is very complicated to say the very least. That adds to your longing for heroic help, all the more.

      And while it would seem ideal to find a man who could marry you and love you in a wonderful, healthy way AND take on a ready-made family where he would be a nurturer to your girls, instead of being someone who is a taker –the likelihood is rare indeed. I’m not saying that it’s impossible, because it isn’t. But it’s not the norm (as you acknowledge in your last paragraph).

      You have to know that as women, it’s easy for us to romanticize relationships. We think because we want and desire love and security, such as you describe, we will, of course, find such a man. But that isn’t usually the case. Often times, what happens is a woman will find a man who SEEMS to be the right one but eventually, he steps off the pedestal he was placed upon and then real life happens.

      Proceeding marriages, especially when children from a previous marriage are involved, have a higher failure rate than first marriages. A big part of this is because of the “ready-made” family. There are so many dynamics, which go on when a new “father” comes onto the scene. He has missed much of the bonding process from the beginning. I have no doubt that your girls must miss their dad very much. But bringing another father-figure into their lives very well may complicate their lives, all the more.

      They are only 8 and 4 and aren’t on your agenda page. They may SAY they want a dad in their life, but the first time a new “dad” does things they don’t like, it all changes. They’re 8 and 4. It’s bound to change. That doesn’t mean that what you wish for can’t happen. It can. It does sometimes. But please be careful in how much you think about this and long for it to happen. Sometimes, with the best of motives, we project upon someone who comes into our lives that they are the hero we were waiting for. And for a while they will be. But eventually the shine of our hopes wear off and we begin to see the real person –a much different person. And that reality can be a real eye-opener and a dream crusher. At the very least, there will be a HUGE adjustment time and then an adjustment to a much different reality than we thought, originally.

      SJ, please pray, ask God for wisdom and do what it takes to make your life with your children as uncomplicated right now as you try to adjust to the loss of losing your husband and their father. That, in itself, is a HUGE life-changing task and is also a separate issue from finding someone new. Work through your grief. Don’t bring someone in prematurely. I can’t even start to imagine it is time to do that. I may be wrong, but I don’t think so.

      You will have a different grief process than any other. We are all created uniquely so we aren’t on the same time schedule. But 5 months is so, so new. Direct your focus on what is in front of you. As you pray and go about your life in building a good life for you and your girls, God will show you when and if it is time to invite someone new into your life. Yes, your girls may be living in a “strong female” dominated world right now. But don’t underestimate that this escaped God’s notice. We all live in different seasons of life and maybe, eventually a healthy male figure may come into their lives. But right now, I’m thinking that the females around them may be the protective force they need right now. Tomorrow (next year, or the next, or the next…) may or may not be different. God is still capable of teaching them what they need to learn –with males being a directing force in their growing up years, or not. Pray and see how God leads.

      Also, there are men out there (just as there are women) who take advantage of little kids. Don’t be so quick to bring someone into their lives thinking that is what they need. It may or may not be. Some single parents, through good intentions, make the horrible mistake of trying to “fix” something by bringing another person into their children’s lives –only to make it worse. Pray, trust God, proceed carefully and prayerfully in the days, weeks, months and years ahead and you will do MUCH better than assuming your best intentions will cause things to happen for the better.

      As told in Proverbs 3:5-6, I pray you will be able to “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and He will make your paths straight.” “Do not be wise in your own eyes…” I pray God’s favor upon you SJ, and for your girls, that God will heal your hearts and help you to proceed in the days and years ahead in patiently wise ways.

      • SJ says:

        (SINGAPORE)  Dear Cindy, thanks for sharing your wisdom with me. I know that finding romance is not the priority at the moment. It is strange that I had the same verse Proverbs 3:5-6 stuck in my head for the last few days when I sat down to pray and ask for wisdom. I can’t help agreeing on the dangers of bringing someone into my life so soon, especially since I am still hurting and feeling rather vulnerable. But I wanted someone who understands my situation to provide me the much needed guidance.

        I observed how my little ones behaved differently in front of male friends or relatives. Although I try not to read too much into it, I sense their yearning for their father; especially so with my four year old daughter, who had lesser bonding time with my husband. Nevertheless, thanks you Cindy for highlighting the potential issues I may face if I bring someone into my life too quickly. Yes, I will pray for God’s wisdom and guidance in leading my little girls and my life. Thank you for reaffirming some of my thoughts. I will pray for patience too as I claim His promise for us in Jeremiah 29:11. Thank you.

  2. Mary says:

    (UK)  I think that you should take the views of your children into account when you are widowed and not wave any other relationship in their faces. They are grieving and you should put their needs before your own.

    I think that it is disrespectful to their memory of the parent who has died otherwise. It is selfish and it is unlikely to work if you are on the rebound.

    You need a period to fully heal before being free enough anyway to look elsewhere. Just because you are lonely is not the right reason. God is supposed to be your comfort and security. Your main concern should be others not yourself. You should take things slowly.

  3. Lisa says:

    (USA)  This was all very interesting to read… and helpful. I have been a widow for 3 1/2 years and without looking… and then BOOM! I met an amazing man at a reunion. I am 48, which sometimes sounds so old and then being labled as a “widow” it seems too young. I love the Lord and I want to be obedient to Him.

    This lovely man was married to a woman he deeply loved and she left him, which hurt him very much and he tried to get her back for about 3 years. He is very open and honest about his feelings. He too became a believer just a few short months ago. Now I pray about being evenly yoked and we are taking our time in our relationship and he is faithful in his walk with the Lord.

    We both have teenagers and my son has decided not to speak to me because I had my new friend over to our home (not a good choice on my part). I did it because my daughter wanted to meet him and my sister was coming out so I thought it would be a good time where we were not just alone. We live 3 hours apart so only see each other once or maybe twice a month.

    This is the hardest thing I have endured since the loss of my husband. I don’t want to hurt my kids… or his (I am not ready to meet his just yet). Of course his two kids would love for mom and dad to get back together. Who could blame them? And my three just feel like this is weird and way too soon and hurtful to them.

    We have been in this relationship for about 7 months now. We both agree to really go slow and take our time and to just enjoy each other and see what the Lord does. I think I’m falling in LOVE <3

  4. Pastor Michael says:

    (NGERIA)  It is quite painful to lose one’s love, but if it happens one will be able to put the past behind, and move ahead. And if there are children they should be involved in the choice making, so that the journey could be nice. People are of different opinions when it comes to an issues like these.

    There was this woman of 49 to be 50 years this middle of this year, with seven children, hoping to remarry with a man of 69 years who has 9 children; both lost their partners. They are pastors. It is not really working well for them in their courtship because the man is looking for a woman with enough money, the woman there with a heavy load is looking for how to make it lighter.

    So I advise when you have children and they are grown, just carry your cross and remain in your house and get married to your children, unless you are crazy about sex. Then think on how to re-inform your children.

    Men, be careful not to allow your lovely children being bewitched by a desperate woman who will always think good for the children from her bowel, and never mind what will happen to others.

  5. Dupe says:

    (NIGERIA)  I sincerely feel for everyone of you. I am a single mother. I am a God fearing woman who cherished and loved her former husband.

  6. Donna says:

    (USA)  I have a different situation. My husband died June 16 2011, after an 18 month battle with cancer. Well, my oldest daughter was fathered by Rick. She knows her real father. After my husband died we started to correspond together. He’s in jail… for drugs. While in jail he’s been saved and is the best Christain ever. He has read the Bible at least 2 times and I see a good man who has changed.

    He will get out in Sept of this year. I do love him, just as if I were 21 again and he has asked me to marry him, on Valentines Day. I really want to but I feel everyone is going to hold it against him that he was in jail… how can I get eveyone past this?

  7. Desiree says:

    (USA)  The segment on sexual compatibility is interesting because you can’t know until you are married (or having sex, which I assume this article advocates for chastity). You don’t know until you get there. You can SAY all you want about your beliefs or your libido, but then it happens, and you realize the frequency or what you want to do changes. I mean If you say “I like sex once a day/week/month” you can’t even know if that is true until you are married again, and this information would be based on information from your LAST marriage, and that is not really fair to share with the new fiancé.

    What was true for your last marriage isn’t neccesarily true for the next one. It’s an “our sexuality” issue not a “my sexuality” issue. This really has to be hashed out and worked on after marriage. Except for the “I don’t believe in _______ in the bedroom” there is really not much to say here. If you value your mate you will work on the sex life regardless of what you discover after. 26 Y.O. widow.

  8. Tom says:

    (USA)  Dear Brothers and Sisters, I’ve read the different comments with an open mind and heart. I believe it simply boils down to first and foremost having a right relationship with our heavenly Father then praying and letting God know your feelings and desires then ‘listening’ to the still small voice of the Holy Spirit within you.

    We are not our own and many times our world revolves around the things that make us happy in this life rather than things that makes God happy with our purpose and walk with him on earth. The Apostle Paul discussed the issues of marriage and remarriage in his first letter to the church at Corinth in chapter 6:15-20 and 7:1-40. Specifically in verses 7:1-11 Paul noted what the scriptures originally taught as per God’s directions. He then shared his own feelings in verses 12-40, howbeit with the declaration in the last portion of the 40Th verse, that, “I think also that I have the Spirit of God.”

    The scripture says, “…to work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” The best admonition I can say is to ultimately make certain that your decision is in line with God’s word by praying in line with God’s word. Your purpose in marrying or remarrying is to better serve the Lord with your union.

    Many times our fleshly desires to be made comfortable, happy and pleased in every area of our lives takes precedent over, “Not my will Lord, but thine be done.” We can see no further than all the comforts, desires and needs of our life here on earth with no serious thought given to the fact that our entire existance here should be to please the Lord with everything we do and with whom we do that with.

    Outside of accepting the invitation of God to believe on his only begotten Son Jesus as our saviour and also as the Lord of our lives, who we marry or not is the SECOND biggest decision we’ll ever make here on earth. Whether you marry, remain single or remarry, do so with your utmost desire being in pleasing God with your life.

  9. Kate says:

    (SOUTH AFRICA)  I have loved reading all your comments. It is such a blessing to know that we are not alone in this struggle of life, even though the loneliness could be so overwhelming sometimes. But praise God He is always right by our side, reminding us that He is our best friend who will NEVER leave us nor forsake us.

    I lost my husband suddenly in a motorbike accident 2 and half years ago. He left me with 2 little boys, then 1 and 3 years old. The 2 of us had given up our lives to follow the call of God and we had started a ministry supporting orphans and widows. We lived on the border of the tribal lands into where we worked. 4 days after my husband died, a boy broke into our property as he heard there was no longer a man around. He stole our charity laptops and burnt our offices to the ground, and almost our whole house with it. That was the day before our orphan Christmas Party for 1500 at our offices.

    A story like that spreads. The same day my husband died God started giving me the most mind blowing revelations. I could immediately see God that God had started putting things in place about 10 days before. I love God with all my heart, all my strength and all my life. I knew that God’s will is perfect. So I realized that He had let this happen, and so therefore, the rest of my life would be more perfect without my most amazing husband, then had he been allowed to live.

    For 2 years, I stayed out in the bush living alone with my little boys and because of the whole story spreading, God took the charity to a whole new level. I turned to God in a whole new way, pouring out my spirit and soul to Him, every agony, every achievement, every moment. I have written in my prayer journal almost everyday and I can now read back and see the miracles God has done through my brokenness. I would cry out to God to move me but I promised Him that I would only move when He alone moves me.

    That is how I live my life. When you draw close to Him, allow Him access to every deep corner and desire of your life, His moves become really clear. I knew my season of grief had to change and with it I was praying to move closer to people and for a new husband to work in partnership to advance His kingdom.

    At the beginning of the year he moved me to the most wonderful little home right next door to my boys school. This has radically changed my life to be close to friends again. I can look back and cherish the very alone time I had with God for 2 years as I know He has used that to mold me into a very useful vessel for His Glory. But there is no doubt that I really miss being married and my deepest desire is to fall in love again and to share this awesome responsibility of changing the lives of thousands of orphans in Africa.

    I really try not to ask God: “How much longer Lord?” in case it is still years to go so I better be a lot more patient then that! My boys are now 3 and 6 and soon they will need a dad. I’m a fun mom so I can do this just one more day. That has been my motto that has gotten me through since 7 December 2009. I can look back and through all of this, I realize that I have become so much more of a women than I ever knew I could be. So therefore, I look forward to meeting the new match, the strong, determined, God-fearing warrior our Almighty Creator has planned. But patience is the hugest challenge. Oh fill me with this fruit, Holy Spirit! And tonight, I very randomly typed in “Christian widows getting remarried’ into Google and found this…

    • Cindy Wright says:

      Hi Kate, How my heart goes out to you with all you and your precious children and the orphans you minister to, have been through. Your testimony can’t help but touch the hearts of all who read what you have experienced and are still going through. How we pray God will minister to your needs.

      As I was reading, I have to say though, that I started to be concerned about your deep desire to marry again. It’s not that it is wrong to desire it or pray for a godly man to come into your life, to eventually marry… after all, you are a young, vibrant woman with needs. And yes, it could be that God will bring that man into your life. He has done that for others and certainly can do that for you. I greatly hope He will.

      But as I was praying for you this morning, the words came to be for you to “be cautious… guard your heart… be aware!” Please be careful on this matter. Sometimes we can want something so badly that we let our guard down and aren’t as careful as we should be. And for some people, finding a spouse to love us and have a mutual vision with us, can become a type of god –a type of idol we hold onto, without even realizing it. I’m not saying this is true for you, I just want to caution you, in case.

      With your sons, I can understand your thinking that they would need a dad. I would be the same way (I have 2 sons also). My heart breaks for you and your sons. But I’ve also seen that sometimes it’s best for them to NOT have an earthly stepfather, if he’s not the right one. God can teach your sons in different ways –better ways, than it could happen if they have a man step into their lives and it’s not the right one. Please be cautious. Your sons may do better without a stepdad, than with one. Or perhaps the reverse is true. None-the-less, God is aware of this and will guide accordingly –with or without a stepdad in the picture. Please be cautious.

      I highly recommend that you read through the topic, “Single Yet Preparing.” Even though you have been married before, a lot of this information is still very relevant. Just glean through it. And then we have the topic, “Is He or She the One” –which you may want to glean through if you get to the point where you wonder about someone.

      Whatever you do, please proceed slowly and carefully. Let me repeat myself, proceed SLOWLY and carefully. You sound like a wonderful woman of God –a woman who I would be very close friends with if we lived geographically close to each other. I wouldn’t want anything to happen where you would be tripped up in some way. If you look at the different leaders in the Bible you can see that the enemy of our faith works overtime to try to find that one weakness, which will bring them down. For Solomon it was added wives, for King David it was the lure of sexual temptation, for Moses it was his temper. And the list goes on. They all started out well, but then there was a weakness, which the enemy found and it tripped them up. I hope this does not happen to you.

      You have a very real and understandable need here, but you are also a leader. You are a leader in your home (even though you never wanted that responsibility) and you are a leader, who is helping these orphans. The enemy of our faith will find ways to tempt you beyond what the average person experiences. I pray you are able to stand strong and through to the ending of your life, you will finish well. I truly hope and pray that God will bring that special someone into your life. But if He doesn’t, I pray you will have the strength you need to carry on with Christ alone as your Bridegroom. Whatever the case, I pray for a discerning spirit for you and for laughter — lots of laughter. I know that may sound strange, but it came to me to pray that for you. Children, even those who have been hurt, can many times bring laughter. May your life be filled with laughter. I pray good for you Kate –for you and for your children and the awesome ministry you are participating in with God. May He richly bless you!

  10. Fikile says:

    (ZIMBABWE) I feel I need to talk to people in the same situation as me and it is all of you, I thank God for that.

    My husband passed away 2001 in a road accident. It will be 11 years this December. We had been married 1 year and 3 months and our son was just 1 year. Ever since he died I told myself that I will not remarry. I have been in relationships but ones I really know will not lead to anything serious. I do not feel the urge to get married. My family and friends even at church people feel that it is time that I found someone who I could settle down with.

    I’m very reluctant to this idea. To be honest I have never prayed about this or even asked God for a partner. I have this feeling that God knows what he is doing in my life and when the time is right he will send me a partner.

    Am I doing something right or wrong? My pastor has told me how I’m being very unfair to myself and my son. She says the Bible tells us that it is okay to remarry but I seem not to bring myself to pray about it.

    In my culture there are supersitions associated with death that say that it is because the departed has not let go and as such one will not get married until a cleansing has been done. But I think it is me who has not found any interest in finding someone. I need your advice!

    • Cindy Wright says:

      Fikile, please don’t allow the superstitions of others to rule what you do in your life. Whether your husband died a year ago, or 11, or 50 years ago, please don’t feel pressured into entering into another relationship –particularly a marriage, because others think you should. Just because they don’t understand how you can be okay with not being married, it is not a good reason to consider trying to get married (particularly when you don’t have anyone in mind).

      And as far as being “unfair” to you and your son, if you don’t see it that way, don’t allow them to project that outlook onto your circumstance. Trust me when I say that there are no guarantees that any man you find would be a good father to your son. He had a father. And he has a Heavenly Father. If there is to be another man that comes into your life and his, that would add to your lives together, then let it come naturally, as God would have it. I’m sure you’re a fine mother and having one good parent is better than having one good parent and someone else in your life who is toxic. Don’t look for a father for your son. He has a Heavenly Father who knows what will be best for your son.

      If you’re “very reluctant” to the idea of finding another husband, then don’t do it –no matter what others think or say. I think your intuition is working in a healthy way. You have “learned to be content” as we’re told to do in the Bible.

      A lot of bad things come through superstitions and through others pressuring us into discontentment. If you are at peace, you are doing well –go with that. Pray and ask God to help you to always do His will –whether you are to do it with a husband or without. If you read through 1 Corinthians 7, you will see that when you marry, you will be restricted. Marriage can be wonderful (if it is with the right person), but so can being single (it’s better to be single with more freedom and contentment, than married and discontent). These people and your pastor mean well. But just because they mean well, it doesn’t mean that they are all-knowing. God is. Go with God and don’t feel pressured into discontentment and going the way of the crowd.

  11. Mary says:

    (UK) I would like some input on the following: A male friend who was widowed 2 years ago has started a relationship with the widow of his best friend who died around the same time. The four of them had been friends for over 50 years. Of course, they are both very lonely. Comments to me from my male friend seems to indicate that it was his friend’s widow who initiated the relationship, but he is really only interested in pursuing the sexual side. It seems to me that the lady will get hurt.

    Can relationships work where all the parties concerned have known each other for so many years? Or will the ghosts of their partners hang over them? According to my friend, he was never interested in his friend’s wife while their respective partners were alive.

    • Cindy Wright says:

      Mary, This is not a good guy. He is taking advantage of this widow. When he sees a window of opportunity, he opens it for his own selfish reasons. His motives are not pure. He’s not interested in her, but what she can give him. That’s more of a predator situation than anything else. I hope you can warn this woman. She will most definitely get hurt here and she has been hurt enough with the death of her husband. Only a low-life takes advantage of a widow. If you can’t warn her, I hope you will be able to tell this man to leave this woman alone unless he is willing to be truthful with her and tell her that she is just a hollow piece of skin to him –to use for his pleasure. I doubt whether he will do this because then he will lose his opportunity to use her as he wants. That’s shameful.

      There are no such things as “ghosts of their partners” that hang over them. That’s superstition. It has no scriptural basis whatsoever. I’ve known of several couples that knew of each other before losing their spouses and they eventually marry and have had great marriages. One of these couples is my father-in-law. A few years after my mother-in-law died he met again with a woman who was also widowed. What’s funny about it is that she and her husband had originally introduced mom and dad together (who were married for 43 years before Mom died). They were good friends for a number of years while both spouses were alive but then lost touch with each other. Years after their spouses died, they saw each other again, dated and eventually married. It was a good marriage until this woman died several years later (and then he died). To his dying day he would say, I loved two great women and lost two great women. So yes, friends can get together after their spouses die and have a great life together –but what this man is doing is wrong. He is taking advantage of this widow. His intentions are not honorable.

  12. Vinod says:

    (INDIA) Dear all, Please be advised that you should not waste your time. One thing you all have to consider is that life is limited. There is life and death in world. It’s not in our hand. I am a widower of four months. I loved my wife a lot. I have two children. I am 42 years old and was married for 25 years. I find that without a Life Partner there is no charm in Life. I found my life partner and am planning to marry soon.

  13. Widow Remarried says:

    (NEW ZEALAND) I was widowed in 2010, a mother of 8 children. I have recently married :-) I still grieve for my first husband but I do not grieve alone :-) http://www.familyis.org/blogs/10-thinkingwidow/23-grief-journey.html I did not want to raise 8 children alone. I did not want to be alone.

    • Cindy Wright says:

      Thank you for sharing the article from Elisabeth Elliot. It was very insightful and can be quite helpful for those considering remarriage, and even marriage for the first time. Too often we fall into the “comparison game.” That is a totally unfair place in which to put your spouse. It’s also unfair and not a good thing to expect from your new spouse what someone else did or does. As the article points out, “God gives us each different gifts.” Part of marriage is to join together to help each other in ways we each need. But part of marriage is also “dying to self” and selfish desires, which can hurt your union more than help it.

      Thank you for sharing. I pray God will bless your marriage. I hope that each of you will learn to appreciate each other for who you truly are and will combine the giftedness God gives to you so your marriage is blessed all the more in unity and the strength of working together. As we’re told in Ecclesiastes 4:9-12, “two are better than one…”

  14. Suresh says:

    (INDIA) Hi. I am from Andhrapradesh State, India… in project work at present. My mom passed away 3 yrs ago. We are from a middle class family. Recently dad retired from his service and is presently living so simple at some mission. By God’s grace both sisters are married and living happily… but no terms with anyone present. I remained alone deviating from the society and living in a very small shed with little work.

    I just need the sweetness of my mom and her words… eventually wandering in net usually. I need nothing, just a few words of confidence as a mom. I am pretty sure that I will be a great son of hers. If so, please respond with your hope… I didn’t give you anything, but you can as a humanity & liveness to my life. Hope every mom can forever live for a century. I MISS U MOM. I’m living and dreaming with your memories. Jesus, please take me into your kingdom as quickly as possible… sorry if at all, I troubled you with my message. Take care moms. Amen

    • Cindy Wright says:

      Dear Suresh, Since reading your comment, I’ve been prayerfully considering what to write to you. When you asked a “mom” to respond to your cry, my heart wept with yours. You see, I lost my mom at a younger age, as well. My mom was 56 when she died; I was 37 at the time –too young to lose their mom. Even though I was married and have a great relationship with my husband and my God, a hole was shot through my heart on the day my mom died –a mom-sized hole that I thought that only she could fill. Through a lot of years of silently crying when no one saw me, I deep down felt I was robbed of so many years and so many opportunities we could have had (and I thought we should have had) to talk to each other and to be together. There were times when bad things happened that I just wanted to talk to my mom and for her to tell me that I would make it through it. I needed the hug that only a mom can give and sympathy that only she would give in a whole different way than anyone else could. So, I truly empathize with you and understand the deep grief you are feeling. I cry with you. As a mom, I give you a hug through the Internet on behalf of your mom. I hope you sense it and feel it. I have no doubt that if she could, your mom would have given you hundreds of them, these past 3 years and thousands more in the years ahead.

      Suresh, I can’t give you back your mom. And I can’t be your mom for you –even though I wish I could be. She is the only one who can truly fill that void for the human companionship that only a mom that carried you in her womb for 9 months and bore and loved you, can give. No other human being can love you with that same love. Whenever I am with someone who is with their mom or will be with their mom (I’ve spoken at a lot of mother/daughter banquets and such), I always tell them to give their mom an extra hug and bit of love –to cherish the moments they have together because life on this side of heaven will eventually take that opportunity from them. When you wrote, “take care moms”… I get it. I understand your message. It’s the same one I’ve given to so many. Maybe that’s part of our mission on this earth, Suresh. Maybe part of it is to point others to appreciate all the more the time they have together. Life isn’t fair on this side of heaven. We live in a fallen world and what you and I and others go through (we all have something negative going on), is all a part of what goes on in this world. But it is what it is. Even so, we don’t have to succumb to just laying down and dying ourselves. We need to pick ourselves up and carry on –just as our moms would wish for us to do.

      When I was praying about what to write to you, I thought it was probably just to give you a virtual hug through the Internet. It seemed insufficient to me, but I knew and know it’s important. When people have said, “Sorry” to me, concerning my losing my mom at such a young age, somehow those words were a type of hug to my heart. It’s not the same as a hug from my mom, but it’s a nice gesture. It’s certainly better than not having any type of hug, which is symbolic of my mom’s hug.

      This morning though, as I was praying about what to write to you, God brought the testimony of David Ring to mind. David is a man who has Cerebral Palsy — an affliction caused from the loss of oxygen at birth. David is a very intelligent man, but he has obvious birth defects. He can’t speak clearly and as he says, he “walks funny.” As a result, he has led a tough life. His number one fan –cheerleader, was his mom. When everyone else made fun of him and seemed to be against him because of his disability or whatever reason, his mom was there to hug him and cheer him on. So very sadly, he lost his mom at a young age too –the one person who could help him when his world seemed to be going so wrong.

      I heard David Ring’s testimony a number of years ago and it has been an inspiration to me. I looked him up on the Internet and was able to find an old YouTube video, which you can view. It’s posted at, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Jhc50qGnF0&feature=related. Suresh, I encourage you to watch it, even though the quality is very poor. None-the-less, the message is rich. It’s titled, “Why Do Bad Things Happen to God’s People?” I’m thinking as you watch it, God may give you a hug from your mom through it.

      Since seeing this testimony and others that David Ring gave, I better understand how to keep keeping on, to keep encouraging others in the mission God has given. As David said in one of his follow-up testimonies, if his mom would have continued to live, he realizes that he wouldn’t have gone as far in life –living out God’s mission for him. He realizes that he would still be relying on his mom’s hugs and her care, more than upon God’s and he wouldn’t have been as passionate in giving out the message to all he could, that God loves us. He misses her, but he also knows that she is still cheering him on, with the memory he has of her in his heart. But God is the main one who is his cheerleader now. He is the one who has given him his life mission and is compelling him to deliver it. I’ve seen that in my own life. The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 5:14-15, “For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.” I see that happening in my life. I clearly see God’s mission in my life — and that is that whoever I am with, that they will see the Lord a bit clearer, as a result. My name even means, “giver of light.” I hope I can live up to that name and the mission God has given me. I hope you see God’s mission in your life as you ask God to show you.

      Suresh, you came to this web site, which is one in which our mission is to “reveal and reflect the heart of Christ.” I hope that you will watch David Ring’s testimony (and any others you can watch of his on Youtube). I pray that as you watch it, that God will give you a hug inside of your spirit from your mom. I also pray that you will sense all the more, the hug that God wants to give you and will give you as you grieve for your mom, but even so, you look up to God and say, “what is it Lord?” “What is it that you want me to do in my humble existence to help others?” You and David and I don’t have our mom’s to hug us. But we still have a purpose and a mission to live out. I pray comfort for you and hope and vision. I have no doubt that you are a son your mom would be proud of. I sense this in my spirit. Take her precious memory with you and her hope for you to be a person of integrity and a giver in this life, rather than just a taker… and live out your life’s mission. I know you can do it. And I know that as you put your hand into God’s, He will give you the strength and resolve and vision to do so. May God bless you richly, Suresh.

  15. Veronica says:

    (UNITED STATES) I am 55 years young. Married 26 good years. Recently widowed 3 years ago. I have four well adjusted adult children. I am a follower of Christ. I love God and love people. Walks on the beach, reading, music, cooking, dining out, traveling, loving my husband, loving family. Whoever I marry better like to live near or on water. Ha!

    Now I am ready to share my life again. To have the “Gift of Marriage”. God honors marriage, and so do I. I know that someday the Lord will lead my forever mate to me.

    This year I am going on my first trip alone, (without family), on a Cruise Ship. WOW!!

  16. Loice says:

    (KENYA) I lost my dear husband 17 years back when I was only 33 years old. I am now 50 years old and my two children are grown. I never thought a time would come when I would feel lonely as am now. It’s unfortunate that the men I meet and show interest in me are married. I am not ready to involve myself in such relationships. I want to meet a widower who is ready for a new relationship (friendship or marriage).

  17. Glenda says:

    (UK) I would just like to say that sometimes it is the widow or widower who try to force other members of the family to move on far too soon. It was a horrendous ordeal to have to adjust to my son-in-law’s new partner after only 5 months and to be introduced so casually to her after taking home my grand daughters after having them for the week end. He was very harsh and callous about my feelings and simply told me move on now. Also he insists I let his stepson and new baby daughter call my husband and I Papa and Nana which I feel are almost sacred special names for our blood grand daughters. I thought Aunty Glenda would be ok for them to call me. Am I wrong?

  18. Susan says:

    (US) I want to thank you for your suggestions. I lost my husband of 36 yrs several years ago. I have dated and made some stupid mistakes by getting into a relationship too quickly to fill that void. I was not allowing God to lead me. Now I know that God will find the right man for me just as he did with Abraham when he lost Sarah, then he found Rebekah. I know if I follow the word of God he will lead me to the man he intends for me to be with.

    If I may share this though. I find that since I am older now it appears men don’t want to date much? I have tried online dating but you must be so careful. You have to learn to investigate the man you decide to date and always date in a public place until you get to know each other. As the dating progresses (if it does) you should ask certain question. Things like what his interests are and if he is a believer. Some men who have lost a love one think they are ready but not really. I try to be understanding, but tend to move on if he just want to date and not seriously want a new partner. I guess what I am saying here is if your seriously want to have someone in your life to share the remainder of your life with you must take steps to make this happen, but you must depend on God and read his word so that his word will guide you so that you can accept rejection when it happens and it will. You need to be aware of the type of man that will be compatible to you and your desires as a couple. Frankly I am just going to trust that God to find the right man for me. Put God first and then go out and have fun…

  19. Jenny says:

    (PHILIPPINES) My situation is so complicated. I have 1 son and 1 adopted daughter. I am with my son’s father now and he is insulin dependent for almost 9 years. We really haven’t had intercourse for almost 6 yrs. We aren’t get married yet and for that time we don’t make love. I don’t have any relationships with my opposite sex but this time I met a widow man who is my son’s grandfather too. He is much older than me, 19 yrs of difference in our age.

    My partner knows about my relationship with this widow man and I love him more than my partner. We already had sex and he loves me too but our problem is his 2 daughters who can’t understand us and they don’t want their father to marry again. And on my partner’s side too, I really don’t know the effect to my kids. What will I do??? I wish somebody could help me.

    • Ter from United States says:

      Try to convince your husband to accept your new relationship. Dye your hair in white platinum and make it curly. Explain to your husband that this relationship is for health reasons, to keep you and the elderly man healthy so you can continue to take care of him.

  20. Dorry says:

    (KENYA) I’m 37 years old, a widow for seven years. I have a soon who is 12yrs; I took him to a boarding school due to poor performance in day school. Since he left I’ve been so lonely and I’ve been praying to God for a partner because I feel I’m ready to remarry. My husband died of HIV and I later discovered I was infected. I’m strong and full of life ahead of me; I pray for a partner with the same status as mine but still strong and ready for marriage and I’m waiting on God.

  21. Magdaline says:

    (KENYA) I am a lady aged 53 years. My late husband died 5 years ago and I have a son who is 26 years of age. I have been wanting to remarry but I have not come across any interested person. I am a Christian and am trusting Almight GOD that very soon I will come across somebody who will be interested in me. At times I feel so lonely but I have no otherwise. Please pray that I can get someone from my country and my tribe (KIKUYU). I will appreciate it (54-65). GOD BESS YOU ALL.

  22. Judi says:

    (NIGERIA) My hubby passed on 24 months ago. I was 33 yrs at the time and I have 3 children, ages- 7, 5, and 3 respectively. The last one was 9 months at the time. I was alone since then praying for God’s direction on whether to re-marry or not. Just a month ago I met this man, a young divorcee and right now I think we are in a serious relationship, which will eventually lead to marriage. Please, I need your prayer to pull through as I cannot cope alone. We really love each other (for now) and would wish to continue for the rest of our lives.

  23. Lilian from Kenya says:

    Hi dear, I lost my husband at a very tender age when I was only 28 yrs old, in the year February, 1996. I mourned my loved one for more than ten years but realized that however deep I cry for him, he will never come back. I was left with a small baby boy of four months who is now 17 yrs old and in form III. I have struggled to find love but none has been promising as most men even widowers, are just out there to play with women. Sometimes I feel so lonely but pray that one day God will give me the right person. It has not been easy but God has been lifting us up whenever we are down. Am now 45 yrs but have not yet found love.

  24. Cynthia from Singapore says:

    I am a single and I am 25. I have never been in a relationship. I didn’t have any interest to be in a relationship until I met this guy. I met him through facebook. He is a 34 years old widower and he has a 9 year old daughter. I would say that it is love at first sight cos I accepted just because I like the way he smiles. I must say that he is brave enough to say that he is a widower and he has a daughter, and he is looking for a serious relationship on the first day we talked. He is a Christian.

    I have this nature that I don’t trust men. But I think I really fell for him. We have known each other just about 2 months but we did have some arguments on and off. Every time he will let go of our arguments and will talk to me with sweet words again. Since I met him, I prayed to God that I have never been in love before but I think I really like him. If he is the one that God prepared for me please keep the door open for me. So when we have arguments or when something happened like we didn’t contact each other for 2 or 3 days, I will tell “God, please keep him away from me, if he is not the right one for me.” But surprisingly, everytime I talked to God like that, he will contact me again on that day itself. So I don’t really know what should I do and I have been praying too.

    Sometimes, I just can’t trust him cos he couldn’t send me more of his photos or call my phone, reason being he is in the sea. Oh.. he is a sailor. So he said he couldn’t call me. I only have few photos of him and I have never talked to him on phone before. On top of that, I never believed or trusted online dating. But I can’t ignore the fact that I like him. Now he told me that he will come to Singapore to meet with me at the end of March after he is done with his work. Please give me some advice and spiritual guidance. I have no experience in this thing called love and relationship and I am scared that I will be hurt too. I am confused and can’t think anything straight. Please help me.

    • CINDY from United States says:

      Please be careful. If you have never met them in person, please be aware they may be misleading you. Some of the warning flags are when they cannot give you photos or call you. There are people out there that prey on men/women to “fall in love”, and then somewhere down the line, they need money. These are people who are generally using other people’s photos they found on the internet. They tell you what you want to hear, so that you will trust them and “fall in love”. If the guy starts requesting you send him money, especially if he says it’s an emergent need, beware….it’s a scam. I experienced it a little, but then figured out he wasn’t who he said he was.

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