When Your Spouse Dies

spouse dies - Pixabay flowers-980050_1280When we marry, our goal is to “become one flesh.” It’s talked about in the Bible in Genesis 2:24, Malachi 2:15; Mark 10:7-8; Matthew 19:4-6; and Ephesians 5:31. But what happens to the surviving spouse when his or her spouse dies?

That’s a question we’ve been asked many times here at Marriage Missions. It’s a type of “ripping and tearing” that many have experienced after their other “half” dies.

To Help You:

So to help you in whatever way we can —knowing that this will be a very painful journey that no one, except those who have traveled this road as well, can truly understand, below is what we have found. Below you will read a portion of a letter written to a widow that reached out to us for help. We pray God will use it to minister to your heart as well, and below it, we will include links to additional articles posted on the internet as well:

I did some research and came up with a few things that I pray will minister to you. The first are two web sites that you might want to visit.

Here is a description of the web sites:

• Griefreliefministries.com Have you suffered a loss? David Knapp will walk with you through that experience. That is because he has walked through each of these himself. Grief does not discriminate. Additionally, grief can blindside the youngest to the oldest. As friends and family watched him walk with his second wife through the throes of cancer, many realized that this man does not deny the sorrow. But it will not master him. He shares kindly, intimately and with wisdom not only how to cope in the darkest of days, but also how to go through the process finding relief and into a winning attitude for the next chapter or phase of your life.

GriefShare is a friendly, caring group of people who will walk alongside you through one of life’s most difficult experiences. You don’t have to go through the grieving process alone. Thousands of groups meet weekly around the world. Visit or join a group at anytime. And attend as many meetings as you like. There are thousands of GriefShare grief recovery support groups meeting throughout the US, Canada, and in over 10 other countries. Also, you can sign up to receive an encouraging email message every day for a year. These short messages will inspire you and provide practical information as you grieve the loss of your loved one.

Doing what it takes:

After I lost my dad I did a lot of reading on the subject of grieving. Those of us who have lost a loved one, need to do whatever it takes to get through every moment, celebrating the happy moments we had with our loved one and crying when we can (because tears are cleansing and healing). It’s also important to look for ways to get through the tough times with our heads held as high as we can. God will give you strength as you keep looking to Him and praying that He will be your husband (as He promised to those who are widows).

I did some searching for you and the following are various quotes that were given to me. They were written by Martha Whitmore Hickman, from her book, Healing After Loss: Daily Meditations For Working Through Grief, that might help you in some way.

She wrote:

“In case we’re feeling driven to somehow ‘get done with’ our grieving (if I do it faster, maybe I’ll feel better sooner), let us be reminded that, as in many of life’s profoundest experiences —making love, eating, and drinking —faster is not necessarily better. Perhaps the thing about grieving is that the process will not be cheated. It will take as much time as it needs. Our task is to be attentive when the messages of mind and memory come. If we let them go by unattended the first time, they’ll probably cost more in the long run.”

“Sometimes it’s the last thing in the world we feel like doing—getting out and being physically active. Aside from the effort it takes to get up and move, who cares whether we keep our body in good working order anyway? This is one of the times when thinking has to overcome feeling. We know exercise is ‘good for us.’ It’s hard to continue to feel depressed when muscles are working vigorously, when we’re paying attention to covering ground or swimming through water.

“As we release physical energy in these rhythmic motions, part of the energy of grief rides away, too. Part of the psychic value of such activity, I suspect, is that we’re witnessing our own competence, our ability to move rhythmically, to be ‘in charge’ of our bodies. Our sense of self-confidence will spread. Maybe we won’t be forever captive to grief after all. The physical invigoration of exercise invigorates our spirits as well.”

Fear of losing contact

“Sometimes we’re unconsciously fearful that if we begin to move away from our grief, we’ll lose what contact we have with the one we miss so much… Perhaps the relinquishing of our most intense grief makes a space into which a new relationship with the loved one can move. It’s the person, after all, whom we want, not the grief.”

“May I hold my grief lightly in my hand so it can lift away from me. My connection to the one I’ve lost is inviolate; it cannot be broken.”

“It’s a costly wisdom, and God knows we would not have asked for it. But it’s also true that coming through a great sorrow can make us stronger, and teach us what’s really important. But to survive the death of a loved one is no guarantee of greater wisdom. We can also become embittered, reclusive, and grasping. But if we can weather the storm, we’ll have a better sense of who we are and what we want most in life. And we’ll learn to savor and cherish cool water, sunshine and wind, the smell of roses —and the love and friendship we have now.”

Shedding tears is cleansing

“Guess what? What women have known for a long time and maybe men are beginning to discover —crying really does make you feel better —and for good reason. Now we’re learning that crying has helpful physiological as well as psychological effects. Researchers at the University of Minnesota have found that emotional tears (as opposed to those shed from exposure to the wind, say, or a cut onion) contain two important chemicals, Leucine-Enkephalin and Prolactin, and that the first of these is thought to be related to one of the body’s natural pain-relieving substances.

“Tears are, they tell us, an exocrine substance —like sweat, or exhaled air —and one of the functions of such processes is to help cleanse the body of substances that accumulate under stress. Then why are we embarrassed by our tears? Why are we fearful they’ll make others uncomfortable? Often, when people cry, the work of healing can begin.”

• “No more apologies. No more uneasiness. My tears are for my healing. Perhaps, too, my tears will give others permissions to cry when they feel the need.”

Adjusting to a life turned upside down

“One of the things so astonishing and costly losing a loved one is that, while the sun continues to rise and set, newspapers continue to be delivered, traffic lights still change from red to green and back again, our whole life is turned around, turned upside down. Is it any wonder we feel disoriented and confused? Yet the people we pass on the street are going about their business as though no one’s world has been shaken to the core, as though earth has not opened and swallowed us up, dropped us into a world of insecurity and change.

“It is, as Emily Dickinson says, ‘a new road’ —for us as surely as for the one we have lost. It will take us time to learn to walk that road. Time, and a lot of help, so we don’t stumble and fall irretrievably. Those who have had their own experiences of loss will probably be our most helpful guides —knowing when to say the right word, when to be silent and walk beside us, when to reach out and take our hand. In time, we’ll be helpers for others.”

Shattering Pain

“Sometimes we berate ourselves: Why are we not doing better? Particularly if we’re people with any pretense to faith, why can we not muster the resources of faith and be a model of calm acceptance and inner serenity? It’s because we’re human beings and we’re hurting. No one worth his or her salt is going to think less of us if we acknowledge the shattering pain this loss has brought.

“People may conceivably hold us in some kind of awe if we exhibit an unnatural calm, but they’ll feel closer to us (and better able to deal with their own grief when their time comes) if they sense we’re being honest. We need to let the grief flow through us even as we try to be aware of the ongoing life around us. Sometimes it’s a matter of precisely that —letting the grief flow through us. It’s an act of the utmost courage.”

“I will not further burden myself by trying to fit some image of a ‘model griever.’ The strength I have is the strength to be myself.”

Keep eyes open

“Change is the order of life, yet how we resist it. Sometimes, looking back, we see that only by letting go were we able to move on to the new adventures, new insights and satisfactions. A widow, who had lived in her husband’s shadow, doing the dutiful wife-and-mother things, emerged after his death as a featured speaker at many church and civic gatherings. She said to me once, ‘Isn’t it a shame I had to wait until he died before I began to come into my own?’

“We live our lives in chapters. What was right for her in the early years of her marriage was obviously not suitable in her later years. Nor would she have wanted to consign home and children to someone else’s care when her children were small. There is consolation in knowing that change, even difficult change, brings surprising gifts. Though the thought may be unappealing to us now, let’s not shut the door too soon on something good that could be waiting for us in the next room.”

“I will keep my eyes open. Something surprising and good may happen tomorrow —or the day after.”

Also:

The following are quotes from the book, Will I Ever Be Whole Again? Surviving the Death of Someone You Lovewritten by Sandra Aldrich. In it, Sandra wrote what she learned after she was widowed.  I HIGHLY recommend that you obtain this book. There are many, many other statements and points and stories included in the book that will weave all of these statements together.

Prayerfully consider:

“Our brains often move slowly as we try to absorb bad news.”

“Our bodies are constructed in such a way that we must grieve. And if we aren’t allowed to grieve appropriately, we will express it inappropriately, often through anger or depression. …Bereavement is the time after a major loss. The outer signs, such as wearing black or having annual memorial services—such as the Ethiopians do—are set by societies.

“Grief is an emotional response and can stay with us for years. But a thin line exists between grieving the loss of someone we love and grieving the way our life has turned out. We all know people who display grief so intensely even years after a death that they’re difficult to be around since they are convinced no one has suffered as they have.”

“During the year I worked on a funeral-home counseling team with Dr John Canine, a Detroit area grief therapist, part of my job was to encourage new widows. Of course I knew the widows’ pain all too well, but while I agreed that [my husband] Don’s death was an amputation, I had decided it didn’t always have to bleed. Most women found comfort in my soothing, ‘It may always hurt, but it won’t always hurt this much.'”

“The grieving process may be complicated by the individual situation, but the intensity with which we grieve often depends on a combination of four variables: the closeness of the relationship, and whether the death was sudden, premature, or violent. Any one of these characteristics means intense sorrow, but with each additional grief intensifier, our emotional pain deepens.”

Trying to make sense

“Suicide, war, murder, accident, devastating disease. Death often is absolutely senseless and even my refuge of the sovereignty of God doesn’t offer a satisfactory explanation. How tired our heavenly Father must be of our blaming Him for the consequences of human decisions! I’ve finally settled on this: Our only choice in the midst of tragedy isn’t whether we’ll go through it, but how. Only the Lord’s presence offers comfort —and the hope that we will see our loved ones again.”

“I truly believe that God in His re-creative way can bring His good out of our pain, but I also believe that we have to be willing to see the good that is created. But how do we accomplish that when the loss is so senseless? Granted, sometimes the victories are small by themselves, and it’s only in the comparison of how we used to be that the miracle is seen. I’m convinced that even the most tragic loss ultimately can be turned into good —if we allow it to be.”

Also consider that:

“The loss through death will always be an amputation, but it does not always have to bleed.”

“Dr Elisabeth Kubler-Ross found that the dying work through five basic stages: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. We know that the families of the terminally ill go through these stages too. But after the death, the griever faces additional challenges through numbness, searching, disorientation, and resolution.”

“Numbness can last from just a few hours to several weeks. Everything seems to move in slow motion, causing the grievers to feel as though they are in a bad dream or walking through a fog. As the numbness begins to fade, the intense grief of this early stage may produce chest pains or feelings of suffocation.”

Questioning

“Searching —the next stage —can be an intense time as the grievers come out of the fog and ask, ‘What exactly happened?’ In the early part of this stage, the survivors will want to see the autopsy report or police account. Not only is it normal, but it is healthy. Getting our questions answered, painful though the process may be, gives us some emotional control.”

“During the searching stage, that awful question ‘Why?’ surfaces. Often it’s accompanied by ‘What else could I have done?’ or ‘Should he have stayed on chemotherapy?’ or ‘Maybe he should have gotten off the chemotherapy.’ Of course this is a painful time for listening to the griever’s questions too. No quick answers exist. After [the famous preacher] Peter Marshall’s funeral, his anguished widow, Catherine, asked her mother why this had happened. Her mother, also a widow, answered quietly, ‘In God’s time, He will give you His answers.’ With hindsight we see that the Lord brought blessing out of the pain as He gave Catherine her special [writing] ministry. Countless people have been comforted by writings that could not have been produced except through her own suffering.”

“When the survivors are ready to let go of the deceased’s personal items [don’t rush into it if you aren’t ready], they often wonder which ones they should discard and which ones they should keep. Many counselors divide the items into two categories: linking objects and mementos. Linking objects are personal items, such as toothbrushes, [pillows, etc] and should be discarded as quickly as the griever is comfortable with throwing them away. Mementos include family pictures and heirlooms that are an important part of the family’s memories. Mementos should be kept [unless it causes more pain than joy].”

Allowing tears AND laughter

“How soon laughter or even quiet grins return to our lives depends on how we handle our grief. But a time comes when we must allow the laughter to return —or pull our gloom even tighter around our shoulders. Medically, laughter causes the brain to release chemicals called endorphins, which relieve pain. When Proverbs 17:22 says, A merry heart does good like a medicine, it’s true!”

“FACE THE LOSS. You aren’t damaging your Christian testimony if you cry. It’s okay to miss someone you love. Remember, even Jesus wept —over Jerusalem (Luke 19:41) and at the tomb of Lazarus (John 11:35). So if Jesus, the son of God, can cry, it’s okay for a frail imperfect human —to cry.”

“In facing the grief, it helps to remember that some of the dumbest things are going to get to you. …Talking through those ‘dumb’ symbols of loss with a trusted friend or a knowledgeable grief counselor can be important in acknowledging the hurt. Those who try to ignore looking at their distress —whether because it’s too painful or because they think ‘good’ Christians don’t cry —often battle depression later.”

“Something healthy happens when we say, ‘This hurts!’ Releasing that pain may be as dramatic as sobbing on the kitchen floor, as intense as crying all evening after the children are in bed, or as quiet as a deep sigh when a young family reminds us of what we’ve lost. The only immediate cure I’ve found for that pain is the Bible. Every human emotion is recorded there. Immediately Psalm 74:1 comes to mind: Why hast thou cast us off for ever?‘ Once we’ve accepted the reality of our situation, we can begin to work through it with the Lord’s help.”

“Should haves” brings false guilt

“For those still hounding themselves with the ‘should-haves,’ they’re dealing with false guilt —the kind the Enemy loves to use against us. One way to release it is to say aloud, “This is false guilt, and it is not from God.’ As you keep talking to God about it, the peace will eventually come.”

“Believe it or not, we do have the choice of whether we want to be better or bitter because of what we’ve experienced. What if we stopped asking ‘Why me?’ and pondered ‘Why not me?’ Why do we think we’re supposed to get through this life without sorrow? Think of Job’s observation: ‘Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble? (Job 2:10). Allow that grief to help you become a better person as you learn from it and help others through their pain. We can also help ourselves as we grasp the importance of this moment and this day.”

Tears can be healthy

“When Jesus said, ‘Come unto me,‘ He did not add ‘But come without tears.'”

“We are truly ‘fearfully and wonderfully made‘ (Psalm 139:14). God knew what He was doing when He gave us tear ducts. In fact, when we’re under stress, crying is a healthy thing for us to do. In the early eighties, William H. Frey II, Ph.D., director of the Alzheimer’s Research Laboratories at Ramsey Medical Center in St. Paul, Minnesota, led a team of researchers testing the content of tears. By comparing the tears shed when the subjects peeled onions against the tears shed when those same people watched a sad movie, the researchers discovered noticeable chemical differences.

“But haven’t we always known that? Think of the times we’ve responded to ‘What’s wrong?’ with ‘Nothing, I just need a good cry.’ If we’re not allowed to cry because of our own or society’s standards, I’m convinced the brain holds the toxins that should be released, thus producing other problems. It’s better if the tears flow now so we can move on later. That’s why the friends who were the greatest comfort to me were the ones who simply put their arms around me and cried too.”

“Grievers are caught in a time warp; each moment rolls heavily toward us as a reminder that our life has been changed forever.”

Steps in helping children and you:

“From my personal and professional experiences I’ve learned some important steps in helping children: ~ Tell the truth right away. ~ Be truthful. ~ Tell only what the child can handle. ~ Encourage children to express feelings. ~ Allow children to attend the funeral. ~ Take the child to the cemetery. ~ Let the child talk. …How many times have we approached the adult at the funeral home and ignored the children standing nearby? It’s important that they, too, be allowed to talk —to explain how their [dad or mom] died or to share a special memory. Not only does that attention acknowledge their place in the family, but it acknowledges their grief as well. … ~ Encourage communication. ~ Be there. ~ Affirm the child’s feelings.”

“Our children learn how to handle stress by watching the adults in their lives.”

“Philippians 4:19 was the scripture [my son] ten-year-old Jay was memorizing the day his dad died. The copied verse from the King James Version was on the kitchen counter when I came home from the hospital to tell the children the bad news. The note paper almost seemed to glow, as though the Lord Himself was offering special comfort: ‘But my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.‘ Many times I tested that promise, even occasionally challenging Him with ‘Even this need, God?’ Gradually I learned that He hadn’t overlooked anything. Amazingly I learned to do many of the things that had belonged to Don’s traditional roll —even changing the oil in the car and balancing the checkbook. But most of all I grew, learning much about myself and even more about my heavenly Father.”

More advice to remember:

“If well-meaning people forget the promises they’ve made to you in the funeral home, try to remember they cannot be all we want them to be —just as we can’t be all they need us to be.”

“Inappropriate responses can result in greater problems later. As searing as fresh grief is, the recovery still is swifter when we face our loss.”

“Concentrating on what we have left instead of what we have lost helps ward off depression.”

“TAKE GOOD FROM THE PAST INTO THE FUTURE.

Second Corinthians 1:3-4 reads, Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.‘ In Genesis 50:20, Joseph says he talks to his brothers in Egypt, years after they had sold him to a caravan,You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.‘ I am convinced that God can —and will —bring His good out of any situation we give to Him.”

“Learning to take care of ourselves in the midst of grief can be both a challenge and a new beginning. Find ways to help others and thus help yourself.”

There is also something that Georgia Shaffer wrote in her book, A Gift of Mourning Glories that would be good to keep in mind when you are tempted to escape your pain in a way that you shouldn’t. Gloria wrote of a woman who understandably struggled in her grief, but in trying to escape it, she almost went in a direction that would have lead to later regrets piled on top of her grief.

Please read:

“Gwen had valuable insights to give after she’d gone through her own ‘valley of sorrows.’ She writes, ‘When my beloved husband died, I was left with a void the size of the Grand Canyon.’

‘Shortly after his death, I enrolled in a college class and met Bob, who was attentive toward me. I was surprised by how his attention eased the ache in my heart. I looked forward to each new day. Within one week my new friend and I were sitting together for lunch, lingering behind the other students, and having private conversations.

“One night after a lengthy phone conversation, Bob came to my home. We sat on the sofa, he leaned over and kissed me, stirring all the passions within. Not only was my husband gone but for a moment so was the pain. How tempting it was to follow my desires. But God is good at rescuing his people. Bob and I were interrupted by a phone call, which put an end to what could have been a regrettable event.

‘The next day reality slapped me in the face,’ Gwen recalled. ‘I asked God to forgive me for trying to bury my pain. The ache in my broken heart returned full force, and I was back in the grip of grief where I needed to be. I’ve learned that when we enter into a relationship prematurely, it acts as a temporary pain pill and stops the much needed grieving.

“Experts say it takes 2-5 years to adjust to a new normal. It took me that long to gather the pieces of my shattered heart. Finally I’m at a place where I can give my heart away to someone else. It was worth the wait.”

Here is something from the book, Coping with Life after Your Mate Dies:

Quotes to minister:

“The death of your mate will greatly affect your physical and emotional health. Grieving can cause numerous physical manifestations, such as headaches, dizziness, insomnia, moodiness, and various appetite problems. When reminders of your departed loved one cross your consciousness, anxiety and panic attacks may occur, manifested by irregular heartbeat, shortness of breath, trembling hands or feet, among other symptoms. Most physicians agree that there is a direct link between physical health and one’s mental/emotional state. Mental-health authorities have discovered that prolonged and unresolved grief can actually cause physical disabilities that may indirectly become life-threatening.

Difficulty getting to sleep

“One of the common complaints of grieving spouses is difficulty in establishing a regular pattern of restful sleep. A friend of mine recently witnessed the long, painful death of his 53 year old wife. He found that he awoke several times during the night with “flashbacks” of the wonderful times that he and his wife had enjoyed. On other occasions these sleep disturbances bore reminders of the occasions when his afflicted wife needed him to move her to another location in the bed.

“Other persons we have interviewed complain that they are prone to awaken at an early hour, such as 3 or 4 o’clock in the morning. One lady said she cried herself to sleep each night because she was now sleeping alone for the first time in 37 years.

“There are a number of ways of attempting to cope with these and related problems. First and most importantly, it’s helpful to recall certain verses and promises that God has given us. Recognize that there are countless conditions and situations, such as your mate’s death, over which you have little, if any, control. Man-made explanations and remedies cannot remove your present grief. No amount of talking on the part of your friends that ‘you need  to get on with your life’ will resolve your problems.

“Unfortunately, too many people utilize the resources found in God’s Word as a last step in helping them in their present need. To help you with your sleep and other physical problems, you can remember special promises God has given us. For example, read Deuteronomy 31:6; Matthew 7:7; and John 14:14. Your pastor can suggest many other relevant Scripture passages.”

With that in mind, here are some scriptures that might help you with this journey.

Scriptures on this matter:

  • The good men perish; the godly die before their time and no one seems to care or wonder why. No one seems to realize that God is taking them away from evil days ahead. (Isaiah 57:1 LB)
  • Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; He will never leave you or forsake you. (Deuteronomy 31:6)
  • God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. (Psalm 46:1)
  • The LORD is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth. (Psalm 145:18)
  • Fear not, for I am with you, be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you. (Isaiah 41:10)
  • Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. (James 4:8)
  • Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints. (Psalm 116:15)
  • Now the dwelling of God is with men, and He will live with them. They will be His people, and God Himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away. (Revelation 21:3-4)

Plus:

  • Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. (Matthew 5:4)
  • Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the Lord. (Psalm 31:24)
  • Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from Him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; He is my fortress, I will not be shaken. (Psalm 62:5-6)
  • I watch in hope for the Lord, I wait for God my Savior; my God will hear me. Though I have fallen, I will rise. Though I sit in darkness, the Lord will be my light. (Micah 7:7-8)
  • You are God my Saviour, and my hope is in you all day long. (Psalm 25:5)
  • I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in His word I put my hope. (Psalm 130:5)
  • O Lord, sustain me according to your promise, and I will live; do not let my hopes be dashed. (Psalm 119:116)
  • This I call to mind and therefore I have hope; Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. (Lamentations 3:21-22)

In Addition:

  • Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. (Romans 12:12)
  • Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31)
  • Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. (Hebrews 11:1)
  • We say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?” (Hebrews 13:6)
  • As for me, I will always have hope; I will praise you more and more. (Psalm 71:14)
  • May our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father, who loved us and by His grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word. (2 Thessalonians 2:16-17)
  • You will be secure, because there is hope; you will look about you and take your rest in safety. (Job 11:18)

And, here’s something found in the book, When Your Spouse Dies: A Concise and Practical Source of Help and Advice, written by Cathleen L. Curry (a book you may want to obtain).

Helpful suggestions:

• Make no big changes. During the months after the death of a spouse it is almost impossible to sort out and evaluate the different choices that confront you. Wait a year to settle in to your situation before you sell a home, move, or get romantically involved with another person.

• Be gentle with yourself; allowing God’s love to surround you. Pay attention to getting enough sleep, eating nutritional foods, and getting some exercise.

• Ask for help. Take classes in areas you don’t understand: cooking, finance, car care, etc. Ask friends or relatives to assist. People want to help, let them.

• Read and learn. By reading and listening to other people’s stories, you can gain insight and support for the ordeal you are going through. There is a wealth of books on the topic at the library or bookstore.

• Keep a journal. Writing your thoughts, emotions, feelings, and encounters in a notebook can be therapeutic. This will help alleviate your stress and be a marker in months ahead of the progress you’ve made.

Make sure you:

• Focus on today. Deal with the hurts, works, and blessings of this day alone, not the seemingly endless road ahead.

• Find kindred spirits. Look for those who share the same value system, who can bounce ideas back and forth, and guide you in your many decisions. These could be special relatives, friends, or Christian mentors.

• Be open to spiritual growth. The Bible holds the truth and the power to face the changes in your life. Begin your day in prayer, turn to God with every new wave of emotion, telling Him of your pain and fears; and at the close of the day, thank Him for bringing you through another day.

Below is another list of suggestions, which come from the book, Finding Your Way After Your Spouse Dies, written by Marta Felber, published by Ave Maria Press (a book you may also want to obtain).

Suggestions that may help you:

• Greet the day. Each morning, decide to have a good day, thanking God for His presence and asking for His guidance.

• Build a support network. Family and friends may be sympathetic and understanding —or they may be too submerged in their own grief. Find other people who are also mourning in church or community grief support groups.

• Accept the crying. Tears can be healthy and healing, whether they are shed publicly or with close family and friends.

• Deepen your faith. Use this time to get closer to God, depending on His strength and accepting the hope He offers.

Also:

• Start a journal. Write whatever enters your mind. Record any progress you have made, however small.

• Walk each day. Walking improves the body, reduces stress, and restores the soul. It will help with sleepless nights and bouts of depression.

• Appreciate the straight stretches. Treasure the times of laughter and silliness, and days that flow smoothly. Remembering them will help when it gets rough again.

• Postpone some decisions. Sleep on decisions for 24 hours, put others off until you must make them. Get good advice to help you make decisions. Make a master list of what must be accomplished, when, and how. Tackle these jobs when you are in a more up mood.

• Live in the present. To live in memory, however tempting, is not to live at all. Today is the only day you have. Make a list of what needs to be accomplished today, and begin.

Also:

• Forgive and make peace. In the wake of a great loss, anger can arise over unresolved issues. You may have to forgive your departed spouse – or yourself – for something that was said, or neglected to be said. Honest forgiveness brings closure and a sense of peace

• Make your home yours. Slowly and carefully, make changes so that your home reflects you. Decide which reminders you want to keep of your loved one, and what you want to remove or change.

• Prepare for celebrations. Holidays will be difficult. You don’t have to celebrate them the same way as in the past. Try to have reasonable expectations about what you can handle—physically and emotionally. Get plenty of rest and don’t attempt too much.

• Venture out alone. Although you’ve been accustomed to tables for two, you can still go out to eat, accept social invitations, and go to gatherings alone. It will get easier with time.

• Relive that day. It’s OK to review the details of the day your loved one died, then realize that you survived it. You never have to go through that day again, and neither do you have to remain locked in that day. You can go on.

Another thing you may find helpful:

Go into your Bible and take a journey through the Psalms. Many people I know who have experienced grief have found a lot of solace by reading through the Psalms. There are a lot of verses throughout it, that ministers in a very personal way to those who need a voice to express their hurting hearts. It’s also helpful for those who need verses that will comfort and inspire them. Read, pray, cry through, write, and take into your spirit, all that God impresses upon your heart through this journey.

I pray this helps in some way. If any of this gives you a momentary bit of relief, I’m thankful. I pray the Lord brings others to minister to your needs in the ways in which you need.

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit!(Romans 15:13)

Even in the darkness light dawns for the upright. (Psalm 112:4)

— ALSO —

There are additional articles that can give you additional insights that are provided below. Please click onto the following web site links to read:

— ALSO —

For those who have a friend who is a widow, the following Crosswalk.com article might help you in reaching out to her.

SHOWING LOVE TO WIDOWS

Cindy Wright of Marriage Missions International wrote this article.

If you have additional tips you can share to help others, please “Join the Discussion” by adding your comments below.

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Comments

109 responses to “When Your Spouse Dies

  1. My wife just passed away this January 3, 2016. We were married for 35 years; the later 16 of those years we gave our lives to Christ, and I am grateful that our two children also came to Jesus. We had a dream of growing old together. I remember holding her hand and dreaming together. I personally believed she was a gift given me of the Lord. She was only 53, she worked hard and was always concerned for my health she did not want me to leave her. She exercised, dieted, and took care of here health, unlike myself with diabetes, high blood pressure, overweight, just not a young man after being a chef for 30 years. But I did make peace with God, asked for His forgiveness, and was thankful for my wife, and all that He blessed me with.

    But I learned that God had different plans for me and took Brenda, and left me here. There is not one day since that I don’t cry. My oldest daughter convinced me to move closer to her. We are attending church together, her my two grand daughters, and her husband are attending church for the first time in 15 years. God is good! I know my wife Brenda is with the Lord, and now all of the questions that I could never answer God has brought her home. I’m at peace with death, but living in her absence is very hard. I pray for healing, and to find God’s peace, and comfort in the loneliness.

    1. Patrick, First I want you to know how heavy my heart is for you for your loss. I can’t even imagine how very difficult it must be for you to not be able to see your wife on this side of heaven… so, so difficult. I am so grateful, though, for your testimony of God’s grace through this worst time in your life. You are a giver of hope today to many. Thank you.

    2. Hi Patrick, My name is Matthew. I lost my wife Friday night October 7 at University of Colorado hospital from complications that could not be overcome when she had a heart attack on 16 September here in Colorado Springs. She was only 51 and had no previous history of any heart issues. She had the attack while a passenger in my truck. The damage done to her heart had only 7 known medical cases in world as of 2013. The Doctor’s at both Penrose/St Francis and University of Colorado had never dealt with arterial damage to that magnitude in her heart ever. It was so rare.

      We had just reached our 30 year anniversary on 30 August. I am also having an extremely hard time because I feel I am literally dying inside even though I feel I trust God and will see her again. Our experiences and tragedy seem so alike.

      Even though I trust in Jesus and I was by her side every day watching her pray and staying rock solid in Him through so much suffering…holding her hand when she died in Christ, Even after personally seeing that, I cannot seem to physically escape this deep deep pain and fear so much because there seems to be no break in clouds on horizon. Thank You for sharing your story. It had seemed so similar. -Matt

      1. Hi Matt. I’m so sorry for your loss. On January 3, it will be a year from my wife’s passing. I’m 57 now and my health is diminishing, and I’m disabled. I’m living with my daughter. Though being a Christ follower is helpful we still live in these fragile bodies. Jesus felt suffering just as we do, I’m sure the riches in heaven will surpass what we could ever imagine. For now worshiping my savior helps in my healing. May God give you His peace. In Christ’s Love, Patrick

      2. Hi Matthew, I hope you’re doing well. I’ve been thinking, and praying for you. And looking here for a reply. I guess the biggest difference between your loss and mine was that Brenda died so suddenly. There was no time to prepare, or anything. I’m sure the time you spent at her side was extremely difficult too. Losing my soulmate is the most emotionally hard thing I’ve ever experienced. And I know you feel anguished too.

        The one thing this has taught me is to except today’s troubles, and be satisfied with God’s grace on a day to day basis. I’m thankful Brenda knew Jesus. I will always miss her. Lately I ask the Lord to fill the empty hole in my heart with the Holy Spirit. I know only He can make it whole again. May the Lord grant you Matthew, with His Spirit, that you may know the joy of your salvation. In Christ, Patrick

  2. I am reading everything I can get ahold of on grieving. My husband, Fred, passed away on September 1st, 2016 from cancer. Even though it was inevitable, I am devastated. We were married 23 beautiful years and were perfect mates for one another. We rarely spent time apart during our marriage and truly enjoyed each other’s company. Thank you for this site. It is one of the best resources I have found so far. Praise God for leading me to this wonderful place to help heal.

    1. (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18) We are instructed to “encourage one another with these words” Rochelle, my grieving sister in the Lord. For each of us grief feels overwhelming. My condolences, for your loss. “Jesus wept.” (John 11:35) The shortest sentence in our English Bible. To me it coveys His heart for me and you, and all His children who grieve. “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.” (Matthew 5:4) God cares and so our we instructed to comfort one another. So until I see you “in the air” its nice to know we will see our spouses again. In Christ, Patrick

      1. Reflection for the holidays from Patrick. As I am confronted with another day under the sun, the Lord opens scripture to me. Psalm 23King James Version (KJV) 23 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

        My whole life He has provided for me, [I Shall Not Want] even old scripture can bring me into His fellowship. I will praise Him. I have no complaint my departed wife is in His loving hands. To all who are grieving, a prayer, is the best gift I have ever received, my prayer is for you.

        1. It’s been a full year since God took Brenda. The pain is still agonizing. I long to be with her in heaven. However, being a true Christ follower means staying that way for the whole journey. Just like our wedding vows [until death does us part] the same principles apply, only death or the rapture will take me home. So pain is inevitable, this grief, Lord I pray for comfort, a much needed beatitude. Mathew 5:4 Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.

          1. Patrick, It has been over 17 years since my wife died of cancer, and I still often think of times with her. Those memories may fade, but they never go away. And one day we will meet again in glory! But life often moves on for us. I remember those early months of tears and sitting in the dark walk-in closet late at night enjoying the smell of her clothes and calling our home phone just to listen to her voicemail greeting, and all of those behaviors that we think are odd but are all so very common to those who have walked the path.

            But our Lord has a way of moving us on in life. Through the trials of this pain, the Lord is gifting you with an amazing ability to reach into the lives of others who are on a similar path. If you can reach out for it, you will discover that the Lord has an amazing future of serving Him awaiting you. As painful and odd as it might seem right now, you have been specially gifted for His service and have been given an eternal perspective on life that the Lord desires to use. Let me pray for you, Patrick: Oh Father, I lift up Patrick to You. Come into his life and wrap Your loving arms around him and draw him especially close to You so that he senses Your presence in a sweet way. Speak softly to him and let him clearly hear Your voice. Give him a glimpse of Your future for his life. Give him a vision and help him to grasp onto it. Lead him forward along Your path. Guide his steps and walk alongside of him as his loving Father. Heal his heart by the touch of Your Hand. Help him to know You in a deeper way than ever before. Keep sweet memories of Brenda in his mind, not as a reminder of the past, but as a reminder of their eternal future together with You. I bring these requests humbly to You, in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus, Amen!!!

  3. I am touched by all of your posts. It hurts my heart to read how much you all loved and now are missing your spouses. In my situation I can only wish and hope that my spouse would feel even a a fourth of that grief upon my passing. After 31 years you would think that two people would be closer and comfortable with each other. Sadly it never was or is us. Thank you for letting me share.

    1. Jackie, and M, I feel in my heart these feelings. We share the hurt, the compassion, and the true empathy. For me they are the true evidence of Christ; only He can change a cold and dead soul to make them recognize what is missing in our nature. I for one long in my heart to see His kingdom, where mercy reigns, and love and every thing good are it’s virtues.

    2. My husband of 43 yrs. died and even though life goes on, it’s never the same. I am so lonely. It has been 19 years next month and I still miss him. We truly were one flesh. I have pushed on in life,even remarried,but it’s not the same. This person is a Christian that I married, but my love for him isn’t growing. I feel like I died too. I have never been able to have the joy and good feeling that I had before his death. A question that keeps haunting me is, where is he and what is he doing. I know Paul the Apostle says to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. But in other studies I read it’s the spirit that goes back to God; the body goes back to dust. But where is his soul? We are body, soul, and spirit. Is there any where in the Bible that tells me what he is doing at this time, while I am waiting on Jesus’ return? Can he see me, feel my pain, and know my sorrow?

      1. Hi Rosemary, My wonderful wife left this earth on May 15th 2017 after 17 unbelievable wonderful years. But what I wanted to give you and others is this thought that helps me a lot. My wife’s soul has returned to the “energy stream in the universe”. Humans are made up of pure energy. Anything living is made up of pure energy. Pure energy NEVER DIES. When we die our energy leaves the body and returns to the energy stream that makes up the whole universe. It’s possible that the energy stream IS God. I don’t know, but it does sound like a possibility. So to me, my wife’s energy or “Soul” is not dead, but in fact everywhere! And a part of everything. These beliefs have helped me see her death in a new light. Michael in Massachusetts

  4. I’m in tears reading everyone’s comments because they reflect my own feelings which I know hurt so badly. I suddenly lost my 45 year old husband to an unknown heart problem (still don’t really have answers). We were together since our early teens and married 27 years. I’m wondering if someone can help me with what I’ve read in the Bible that has caused me to lose all hope and become completely depressed. In the books of Matthew, Mark and Luke, Jesus states there will be no marriage at the resurrection. I don’t understand why God would take away something He created and not allow spouses to reunite in marriage? It doesn’t seem fair. Why bother falling in love to have it taken away? Other Pastors etc., I’ve asked say it is because we will love everyone the same. I don’t want to love everyone the “same.” I want the special love that only a husband and wife have for each other. I also don’t see how God can possibly use the loss of a spouse “for good.” I can barely function and it’s going on a year and a half. My heart goes out to all of you. I pray I’m wrong and everyone here IS married to their spouses again … but I’m struggling because of the words of Jesus. Thank you to everyone for sharing your stories. I know it isn’t easy.

    1. April, Brenda my wife for 35 years also struggled with the same verses, she also couldn’t understand other passages, she always asked me many questions. Do your pets go to heaven, I now live with our Puggle who I adore! I personally can’t tell you why, but our God is good, Brenda now has her answers. How heaven works will always be a mystery. Jesus also said He had a place prepared for us, and it would be beyond anything we could think or imagine. I’m paraphrasing, however He knows what we have need of. And we shall see Him as He really is in complete glory, and we shall be like Him. Jesus will show you, and then you will truly understand. We live in broken bodies now, but with Him we will be in glory!

    2. April, eighteen years ago my wife died of cancer at the age of 39, so I can relate somewhat to how you are feeling. Here’s what I can share with you: as you read the Bible you will see the metaphor of marriage woven through it from Genesis through Revelation. In eternity our marriage will be to Jesus. He is the groom, and the church (all believers) is His bride, and we’ll be in that perfect marriage relationship for all of eternity. In preparation for that eternal marriage, God gave us marriage here in this life. Our marriage here was never designed by our God to be a permanent marriage; it was instead designed by Him to prepare us for our eternal marriage, to Jesus.

      Please know that our God is infinitely good and loving and He does have the ability to turn what we view as terribly painful in life into good for His purposes. And, in eternity all will be clear and perfect and restored, and the tears that we cry now we will cry no more as we all worship Jesus together.

      Oh Father, come close to April in this time and wrap Your loving arms around her and draw her close, that she might know You in a deeper way than ever before. Comfort her and give her peace that passes all understanding. Give her a glimpse into Your perfect plan for her life here, that she might ponder it in her heart. Bring Your joy into her life in amazing ways that will bring a smile to her face as she thinks of You. I ask these things in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus, Amen!!!

    3. To April in the United States, I cried when I read your comments, because I know your pain. I had a wonderful marriage too. I was married 43 years. We were getting ready to retire from the military and civil service. We had plans to celebrate our anniversary. But God had different plans. He had never been sick, but had a heart valve problem and died within 2 months from the time we got treatment.

      I had been married to him from the time I was 16 years old. We lived in the same town and neighborhood. I am so lonely without him, and still love him and need him. We had 3 sons together, which is another painful story. I will tell you that helped me SOME. I poured out my heart to God, even though I knew he already knew me and my pain. God said my child, David was sick. If he would have stayed with you, he would never have been the same man that you loved and knew. He would have been sad, because of his condition, and his sadness would have made you sad. God said trust me; all things work together for good to those that love me, and are called according to my purpose. God is good, even when we don’t understand.

      Every time I feel sad, sick and lonely, I think I would not have wanted my Dave, to suffer and be sad for many years with a bad heart. He is not suffering, and that relieves some of my pain. When I read all the good promises of God, my faith helps me through each day. Jesus will come, and he will bring my Dave with him, and I will see him again. I have so much to tell him. Until the trumpet sounds, and the dead in Christ are raised, I wait. This life is temporary, but the next time will be forever, never to part again, no death. I am so thankful to God for the 43 years we had, and I know I will see him again. Hope this helps you some.

  5. I would like to read in the Bible for myself what the Bible says my dead husband is feeling, and doing right now while I wait and continue on in life. I am so lonely.

  6. Mathew 26:38 — “My soul is crushed with grief to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.”

    Grief for me feels as close to any emotion associated to death. The Bible says Jesus experienced all the feelings we do as humans. Hebrews 4:15 — “For we do not have a High Priest who cannot suffer with our weaknesses, but One who was tempted in all things like we are, apart from sin.”

    I stay with you who grieve and pray! In Jesus’s name Amen

  7. I am so thankful that I found this website my husband went to be with the Lord the day before thanksgiving 3 months ago, after 36 years of marriage. He battled cancer for 2 1/2 years. It’s a blessing to be able to read about women going through the same thing. I feel a sense of relief and peace. Although the pain is still fresh in my heart, I do read my Bible everyday and get my strength from God. I go to a support group once a month and basically everyone there has a loved one that they lost so it feels great to cry and talk about your feelings at the meeting. Most hospitals offer Bereavement meetings.

    1. Thank you Cynthia for sharing. I’m so very sorry for your husband. It has to be so very difficult to lose your marriage partner after being together for so many years. I’m thankful that you are finding others who can help you through this time, and that you can help them. I’m also thankful that you found this article helpful. We want the things that are posted on this web site to be a blessing to help in whatever way it is possible. May the Lord minister to your every need and help you to find your smile again :)

  8. Hello, My name is Gary Tompkins and my wife is currently on life support and I have decided that on Monday I am going to tell the DR. that I want her taken off. Almost two weeks ago she accidently took too much insulin and now her brain is damaged 90%. Her eyes just look around and won’t respond to any commands. My heart is torn into a thousand pieces and the pain is litteraly killing me. We’ve been married 22 yrs and are in total love. Her family is in denial and thinks that she may have a chance to recover. PLEASE HELP…

    1. Gary, I am so, so, so sorry that you find yourself in this situation. No doubt this is the most difficult decision you will ever have to make. I hope you have good counsel from a pastor and from more than one doctor. I know that “two weeks” of living in this situation seems like an interminable amount of time; but because your wife’s family isn’t in agreement (yet) with this decision I would caution you about disconnecting your wife from life support at this time. As much as possible you should include them in the meetings with the doctors and your spiritual counselors. If you do not have a pastor to be with you, ask for the hospital chaplain. Nobody can tell you, Gary, what to do or when to do it. As much as possible it’s best to have all family members in agreement. Bringing a pastor or chaplain into this process can help a lot. Cindy and I will be praying for divine wisdom and peace for you as you walk this difficult road.

  9. I am sorry to become so faithless. My wife died at age 63 after we had been married for 45 years. I tried to keep my faith very hard. I went thru Greifshare and counseling with my pastor. And guess what. God forsaked and abandoned me. There is no Blessing for my mourning for I was not Comforted. And don’t you dare compare the Job story. His wife did not die. She already had 10 children killed and had to birth 20 more. I know the Bible inside and out.

    We were believers and everything I know has turned out to be false. We taught Sunday school and I led prayer services. And again, God forsaked and abandoned us both. Prayer does NOT work and I have wasted most my life on this false belief that God loves us. I am in Hell on earth and will have my name removed from the Book of Life. The only difference between this hell and the next will be fire. Sorry to say, I just can’t stand being on this pathetic world anymore.

    1. Dear Andrew, so sorry for your loss. Faith doesn’t negate realities but rather lets us know that in spite of them, God will never forsake us. His presence in the midst of our pain and the comfort which comes when you don’t even expect it is evidence of His love. You might feel the need to reject it because things didn’t turn out the way you wanted or expected but give hope a chance. There are many present day Jobs who still believe. How do they do it? By still holding on to Him- Jesus, for in eternity you will have much longer to be with your wife and you will understand all things better there. In His Love

    2. Andrew; I saw your post and would like to insert some thoughts for your consideration. I am in my sixties as well and have been a believer since a child plus, like you, have taught the Bible most of my life. My experience also includes the loss of a wife…two times. My first wife died of cancer (after a 7 year battle) at the age of 41…married 20 years. I remarried but after another 20 years of marriage, that wife died of cancer as well.

      Needless to say, I had a lot to learn about grief as it relates to the victorious Christian life. I learned that, like the problem of sin in the life of believers, victory does not equal elimination or eradication. I learned that my feelings are real and that grief is not an event but a process. In both examples I felt that emptiness of not even being able to pray. Reading the Bible did not curb my pain. During those times I had to rely on the prayers of others.

      In both cases my faith seemed on the line. I could only cling to the truth even if I didn’t feel like anything was working. I learned that comfort did not “make the pain go away”. I don’t know of any scripture that says believers get that. We still have to “go through the shadow of the valley of death” we are not exempted from it.

      I had no clue a human could hurt as bad as that leaving this huge hole in my soul. Your pain is indeed soul wrenching. Each new wave makes you feel like it will never stop. I am praying for you today.

      You are welcome to contact me if you wish. (davidknapp@hotmail.com) In the Love of Christ, David Knapp

    3. Andrew, I just saw that a friend of ours, David Knapp, replied to you. We want you to know he has written a book that you may find helpful I Didn’t Know What to Say: Being a Better Friend to Those Who Experience Loss You may want to visit his web site, where you will find many articles and other helpful information for those who are grieving, and those who want to minister to those who are grieving. You can find his web site at: Griefreliefministries.com.

      Sadly, there are no “magic bullets” to take away the deep, deep pain you are in right now. And as mad as you are at God right now for this, He knows and understands what is happening in your heart. And even though you have “abandoned” Him, He won’t abandon you. You may not be able to comprehend that right now, but I hope someday you will see and know that. But for now, we pray for you, grieve with you, and hope that you find others around you who will comfort you without judgement and will stand by you to love on you. We pray that somehow, God brings people and situations your way so that you will experience hope beyond what you can see right now. ~Steve and Cindy Wright

      1. I know you are sincere. You still have your wife! God abandoned me first and the hardest. When you have not been forsakened, and alone in this world, then I will seek your advice. Again, I know you mean well; but until you walk in my shoes; you cannot know how I feel. Sorry. No “magic bullets” no “fairy tales”…

        1. Andrew, you’re right, I don’t know how you feel. But I want to share a perspective because Cindy and I have been married about the same amount of time as you and your wife. And we’ve talked a lot about realizing that one of us most likely will outlive the other and the survivor will be devastated beyond what mere words can express. (We’ve watched our parents, one sibling, and many others go through this.) But we have also talked about the fact that there is a purpose for the other being around, if for no other reason than because of our kids and grandkids, and others. Tragically, death is inevitable – almost no one has been able to beat it yet (except Jesus, of course).

          We also believe it could dishonor the memory of the other if we blamed God and rejected our faith because of what is a natural part of living as husband and wife. So sadly, one of us is going to die before the other. I admit, it SUCKS! But that is what most often happens –that one goes first, rather than both at the same time.

          I want to be clear, I’m not trying to tell you that you need to cheer up and get on with life. That would be dishonoring to you. Every one of us grieves differently and I’m sure the pain you are feeling goes beyond human understanding. But at some point, Andrew, I hope you’ll be able to honor the memory of your wife by doing what you can to survive and then go from there. I can’t imagine she would have wanted any less for you, as you wouldn’t want any less for her if the situation were reversed. But for now, it’s one moment and minute at a time.

          Sure, you can dismiss what I say because I haven’t gone through this. But perhaps you can find a little bit of healing by contacting David Knapp since he has gone through what you have twice. He left a comment for you earlier as well. You can even contact him through his web site at Griefreliefministries.com. You’ll certainly be no worse off than where you are right now. It’s your choice, but I hope you will reach for this rope that is being thrown to you. Please know that I/we care.

    4. I guess it must be nice to be so pompass and tell everyone that greives that God is on the way. You can’t see that He said He would always be here. 22 months later and He is still a no show. And ” He will never gives us more than we can handle”? Really? No wonder so many people commit suicide or just come to their senses and know that we are all alone and have a great big surprise when we die. Course, we won’t really be surprised, just dead and gone. Faith as big as a mustard seed? lie. Never forsake or abandon us? lie. And Bola; Job never had his wife die. Just the kids that God was letting be slaughtered for a competition between and satan. So far, my life has been a 65 year test in Gods eye. Guess I failed big time. Tired of the “test”, tired of the lonliness and tired of the bs.

      1. Andrew, my wife died of cancer in 1999, so I know at least a bit of the grief that you’re feeling. It can be a very difficult path to walk. Can I ask you a question? Why is it that you feel that God has abandoned you? I would also like your permission to pray for you. Can I pray for you?

        1. First and foremost, God don’t care at all. My wife and I prayed 7 days a week, several times a day. And when my wife passed I was left alone. No God, no Son, no Holy Spirit to comfort me. I have visited so many sources for help, and prayed in vain for the last 22 months. I am sure my name is erased from the book of life and find myself caring less and less each day. If this is how God loves us, then who cares? You can pray all you want to. It will do no good, it sure didn’t for us. She is dead and I am alone. And God sits on his throne and sits to see who goes to heaven and who goes to hell. I know he won’t send my wife back, I just want to go be with her. Can God be jealous when his own bible said to love your wife, even as Jesus loves the church? I am just so sick of all this crap. Some have told me this is just another test, to test me. I am sick of tests and sadistic games that God plays with our lives. I ain’t going to pass and ain’t God great??

          1. Andrew, I will be praying for you, specifically that our God sends someone to you who can show you His love. I also have something for you to consider: Your wife, as a follower of Jesus knowing Him as her Lord and Savior, is now with Jesus. And she will be with Him for all of eternity. I ask you to pause and think about where she is, and what she is wanting for you right now, at this very moment. Hebrews 12:1-3 says “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”

            Your wife, being now in the presence of Jesus, is a part of that “great cloud of witnesses” described in Hebrews 12:1. She is cheering you on as you run the race that is your life. She is cheering you on, that you might not despair, but that you might finish life well and cross the finish line of life to join her for all of eternity. Pause and remember your sweetest memories of her. Cherish those sweet memories and let them fuel your life as you finish your race, to one day join her again. Remember her voice and imagine her cheering you on… for she is. I will be praying for you, Andrew.

          2. Andrew, I haven’t written to you yet, for my personal grief sometimes is all I can bear. Life definitely is unfair; you get kicked when you’re feeling down. Such is the case with me even today, especially from your own family, like Job’s wife. If I only looked at my circumstances I would “curse God and die!” So I won’t try to convince you to listen to my reasoning.

            So for me, I don’t try too hard to fight God in the matter of taking Brenda from me, but the WHY is always there. I too am ready to leave this evil in the world. I’ve always said to my family, even if there was no God, I have had enough evil days in my life I’d still be glad to go. So for me like Job I worship God even if He gives me the bad. So pray for me too.

        2. I know every word you wrote is true. I am so weak, lonely, and wanting to die so much. I promised my wife I would join her in no time. If God is so merciful and is a God of love, then He should let me come home NOW. We all fall down, and I guess I am one that will never stand back up. If John 3:16 is true, then the rest of this remaining hell on earth will be just another failed test on my part. I knew my loving wife for 47 years and I know she would rather be with me than be in Heaven without me. God made her and she may be his child, but what does that say about me? Her faith places her in Heaven and my pain is going to end me up in hell. I guess no one knows really. I always walked by faith and faith alone. Then God did nothing and let her die. I cannot even get past my anger at God. This will send me to hell I am sure. It’s so crazy that she is there, and I live in hell here till I finally die. Then, who knows.

          Thank you for every word you ALL have written me. The only peace I will have, will be me or the Lord getting me off this earth..Even Mother Teresa had her doubts. And lastly M, your reply has been the closest anyone has come to helping me. I have no heart nor faith to find any peace in your words. But thank you so much.

          1. Andrew, I wish that we could talk face-to-face right now. I have a few thoughts to share that may be helpful for you:

            1) As you are feeling weak and lonely, ask the Lord to come close and be with you in your pain. Tell Him whatever is on your heart. It is completely OK to vent out all of your emotions to Him, no matter how raw those emotions are. Tell Him that you’re angry with Him. Don’t be afraid to share anything, it’s all OK. And then tell Him that you want to sense his presence and hear His voice. Tell Him that you want Him to come near to you. And keep asking until you sense His presence with you.

            2) As I read your words, the very fact that you are questioning whether you are saved, or not, probably means that you are genuinely saved. (If you weren’t saved, you probably wouldn’t be questioning.) Ask the Lord to help you with your struggle to believe. The more that you can read and study your Bible and the more He will make Himself clear to you through what you read. As you ask Him to strengthen your faith, He will answer that prayer, guaranteed.

            3) If you have trusted in Jesus as your Lord and Savior, His sinless life, His death on the cross, and His resurrection, for your salvation, then there is NOTHING that you can do to ever lose your salvation. Your salvation is ALL about what Jesus has done for you, and has nothing to do with anything that you need to do for Him. We are saved by our faith in Him, and not by any of our works. Rest securely in this knowledge, Andrew.

            4) As the Lord begins to speak into your life, ask Him to show you what He has planned for you in His Kingdom. Based upon what you have shared, Andrew, I can guarantee that God has big plans for you for His purposes. You have been through too much for Him to not be wanting to use your experiences to minister to others. (This may seem like an odd concept to you, but I have seen God use the painful experiences in people’s lives to minister to others countless times. He certainly has used the painful experiences in my life in this way. It is how He works.) At some point, if you can ask Him to reveal His plans for you and then begin to step into those plans, your life will begin to come alive again in miraculous ways. For now, just trust me on this point, but remember it’s because it is your path to healing.

            5) And always remember, your wife is in that “cloud of witnesses” cheering you on as you run the race. Put a big smile on her face, my friend!

            You’re in my prayers, Andrew! May you sense the Lord’s presence in a special way today!

          2. Hey M, thank you, thank you thank you. It is me that has failed in life. My mind runs to fast and bitter. I think in my mind like this; Why pray to God for anything? I would not need help had He had mercy on my wife. Can you imagine how much I begged Him to save her??? Why didn”t He speak when I needed Him the most? I cry everyday. I question God at least 30 times a day. I don’t know, I keep praying. I played roulette with my pistol and the hammer felled on a empty chamber. I don’t thank God for that, instead I wish I could try again. I don’t know if that is forgiveable or not. I am 65 and pray for death every day. My heart went to Heaven with her. Life is so meaningless.

            I pray you are right that my wife can see me; but I know she would bring me to her if she could. After 22 months, all I can to is wait. Wait upon the Lord to see if He will renew my strength. I just don’t have a heart for God anymore. That may be my problem. I have printed your messages and read all of them several times a day. Like I said, I have read the bible cover to cover 3 times. I am so dead inside that I mock certain scriptures that simply aren’t true for me. God made us all, maybe He is more selective than any knows. I have debated atheists on two occasions. No way I could do that again. My faith died on 5-12-2015. I think my depression will never subside. I have 2 older neighbors that have cancer. One lady has both breast removed, the other is on a colostomy bag. Both have survived cancer for more than 10 years. One lady is 70 and the other is 74. And yet my wife was unworthy of His grace. Our prayers got filed in Gods trash file. Like I said, I am bitter, bitter, and bitter. God is not fair. And lastly, God cannot use me for anything good. My mind and mouth are to vile for now. I will try my best to apply your message to my life, thank you

          3. Andrew, How are you doing today? One thing that has helped me to work through my really difficult times in life is to write down my thoughts and feelings and frustrations. I will just sit down at the computer and start to type on and on for hours sometimes. It has a way of clearing the thoughts out of my mind and acknowledging them as real and making a record of them. There are many of the Psalms where David starts out by venting his feelings and frustrations and pain. But then God seems to meet him in the middle of the process, and changes his heart, because the Psalm transitions from frustration and pain into praise and prayer.

            Andrew, you might try writing and be asking the Lord to meet you in that process. It has worked for me, and it may be helpful to you. You are in my prayers, Andrew. May our Lord come close to you so that you sense His presence in a very real way today.

          4. Hey there M, today was just as lousy as the last 2 years. I guess I need to quit wasting your time. Thank you for the kindness. Nothing is going to change the fact that God failed, forsaked and abandoned my wife and myself. God is not fair, or just. My wife is GONE. My faith is GONE. My life is GONE. I don’t want another wife, or life. Serving God has been a waste of my life. God will not change my heart. He killed it along with my wife. I have wasted my reading my bible 3 times in 22 months. Everyone “spins” it to mean what they want it to mean. I did myself. We are not to add to or take away from anything in it. God has that job handled himself. I wish you the best with all you do. I will probally not meet you in Heaven, so thank you… Andrew G.

          5. Well, Andrew, I will still be praying. And, we will meet in Heaven. You have plenty of evidence in your words that you placed your trust in Jesus at a point in the past, and Jesus will let none of His sheep be lost. So, even though you might not believe it right now, He will ensure that you are in Heaven for eternity, along with your wife. I will see you there! And always remember, she is a part of that “cloud of witnesses” right now, in this very moment, and she is cheering you on in your life. Oh Father, be with Andrew in the midst of his frustration and pain. Come close to him in a way that lets him know that it is You. Calm his spirit and speak to him. Let him feel Your love, that he has not felt for a long time. Bring Your comfort to his life. I ask these things in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus, Amen!!!

          6. I have visited 4 churches since my beautiful wife went to Heaven. This fourth church has actually addressed the fact that wives do die too soon sometimes. As crazy as it sounds, so many churches ignore widowed people and all of the TV preachers do. I have really felt the Word of God at this church and have read and reread all of your messages. I know that only time will tell, but I think I felt my heart beat again. I want to sit at that table in Heaven with Jesus and my wife and learn why everything became so horrible so fast. He actually said as you did; that our loved ones are in that cloud of witnesses watching us run our race.I am taking this as sign from God to get back up and do something again. I swear I don’t know if I can; but the thought of my sweet Nancy looking at me really helps me. I just want to go one whole day without crying and screaming. Last night was the first time I did not ask God to kill me. (not that He listens to me anyway), and I think the rapture will occur in 2017 anyway. I know that’s another conversation too. No one knows for sure, Jesus said so…I just wanted you to know I am trying to get back up, Larry Andrew.

          7. Andrew, I was going to write to you before you wrote M back… so glad you did though, before I could write to you. I just want to tell you that there are many of us who are and have been praying for you. We have been praying behind the scenes, asking God to help you to see little pinpoints of light –ones that will help you to be able to see some type of hope beyond this horrible, raging doubt storm that you are going through right now. There’s no doubt that what you are going through is one of the worst that anyone could ever encounter. You have been on our minds, in our hearts, and in our prayers. You are loved and cared about more than you will probably ever know on this side of heaven.

            I sense in my spirit that one day you will be united with your beloved Nancy, and she will hug you and say, “I knew you’d make it. I knew it wasn’t your time yet to be here, so I’ve been waiting for you. I’m so glad you didn’t give up.” Please know we’re all cheering you on Andrew. Keep looking for those pinpoints of Light that Jesus has for you that will take you to the next, and the next. And eventually, the darkness won’t be so overpowering, and the Light of the Lord WILL be empowering. But for now, it is one step taken at a time before you will feel strong enough to “run the race set out before you.”

          8. Andrew. My friend… wow… I’m sitting here with tears in my eyes right now. May you sense the covering of prayer that is wrapped all around you right now. Many of us have been praying, and we will continue to pray that “your heart will beat again”, just as in that song written by Phillips, Craig & Dean. There is a miraculous story behind the writing of that song. [You can hear it at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tfgu6tW8Lg8%5D I pray that your heart will miraculously come alive again also, by the Great Healing Power of our Lord and Savior Jesus, and for His Great Glory! May it be so, Andrew, this very day!

          9. Well, just to let you know, this church was a big lie too. In went 3 straight times without a word said to me. God is the liar, the devil never wrote a book of lies and false promises. All the prayers in the world don’t do anything. God loves us as his children?? Please God, quit loving me if this is the best he can do. I have reached my end. Another lie of God is he will never give you more than you can handle. Although this is a paraphrase of a scripture verse, it is still another lie from a book full of lies. Take money and lies from religion and the world would be better. God and Jesus may be real, but they have no love for most of us. They select life for some and death for others and want us to keep our mouths shut. No more prayers for me. My prayers ended up with a dead wife and being forsakened by “loving” God. “Sin” prospers and evil runs our world, and God sits and laughs at us all. How Great Thou Are, indeed. Where is HE?

          10. Andrew, even though you wrote “No more prayers for me”, I will not stop praying for you. And, just as you cannot stop my prayers for you, you also cannot stop the One True God’s love for you. You also wrote that “the devil never wrote a book of lies and false promises”. Be cautious when you make that claim because much has been written throughout history to attack and undermine and discredit the One True God and His Holy Word. We must never forget who the devil is: the father of lies, the accuser of the brethren, the great deceiver… The devil is all about spreading lies and causing us to doubt the truth of God. He began putting doubt into the minds of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden with his question “Did God really say…?” And he continues to put doubt into our minds in just the same way. His deception continues to this day.

            Andrew, do you know whose company you are in? You are in the company of Job. You can read of Job’s immense frustration and pain in Job 30:16-31. As you read his words, I’m sure that you can relate to Job. But then Elihu comes to Job, in the midst of Job’s pain, and tries to offer words of clarity and truth to help Job see the situation more clearly; to help Job. You can read Elihu’s words in Job 32:4 through 37:24. But Job is not convinced in the least, so God intervenes directly into the life of Job in a conversation that follows, from Job 38:1 through 41:34. Job finally reaches a point of clarify in his heart that is immensely sweet, in Job 42:1-6, and Job’s life is restored. I pray that you will reach that same point in your life, Andrew. I pray that an “Elihu” will come into your life. I pray that God will speak to you as He spoke to Job.

            And, above all, I pray that you will reach a point where you will be sitting with Job, as in Job 42:1-6. I know that you do not sense it right now, Andrew, but God loves you with an infinite and perfect love. And, no matter how vigorously you may deny God’s love for you right now, you cannot reduce His love for you in the slightest. One day you will see. In the meantime, I will continue to pray. And always remember, your beloved Nancy is standing in that “cloud of witnesses” offering you encouragement in your life. I pray that you will accept her encouragement, Andrew.

          11. I will be short, first, screw Job! God did not let satan murder his wife. So I could care less about Job’s crap. And all these centuries of testing and God letting all this death and pain on his earth. Some father. I have 2 kids and I never murdered one or would allow the pain that God allows on us. Come on M, I bet I know the Bible as well as anyone you know. And it is unraveling daily. GOD DOES FORSAKE AND ABANDON. How many did He kill in the Old Testament? Thousands! If He is so righteous, why would He give free will to his “children” that He knows are going to fail and end up in hell?

            I did not ask to be born, I have failed whatever test my wife dying was for. For what it’s worth, I know God and His Son are real. I just give up on both. Jesus said if you deny me, I will deny you to the Father. He can, and I will deny the fact that agape love is true. I am in Hell. God don’t care. And if this is His idea of love, everybody is in trouble, ya’ll too.

          12. Andrew, You ask the question “Why would He give free will to his children that He knows are going to fail and end up in hell?” As someone who reads and studies the Bible, you must surely know the answer to your question even before you ask it. There can be no true love unless there is the choice available to each of us to NOT love. Love is a verb, it requires action, it requires sacrifice, we demonstrate our love through how we live and what we do. If we had no choice available to us to not love, then we would simply be like robots, with no ability to choose to do anything special or nice for anyone else. We would act the same way towards everyone, treating everyone equally the same. There would be no need to have any special relationships in this world because everyone would be relating to us in a equal way.

            Now, Andrew, would you really have wanted that for your life? Without the ability to choose to love, you would have not been able to choose to do anything special for Nancy. And she would not have had any ability to choose to do anything special for you. That would have been a pretty bland world, and I don’t believe that you would have really enjoyed it very much. So, while our free will to choose has caused a lot of pain in this world and it is easy to complain about it and wonder why God gave us free will, all of us have enjoyed its benefits as we sat close to a loved one and they showed their love for us through some special action.

            If we are honest, none of us would choose to give up those sweet times in life. And at the end of your question you draw a relationship between our failing and our eternal home. You link together we are “going to fail” with we are going to “end up in hell”. Through reading your Bible, I’m sure that you know that this linkage you made is only correct before we are saved, since we are still in a fallen condition and have not yet accepted God’s gift of salvation through Jesus. But after we are saved, there is no longer any relationship between our failures and our eternal destiny. We are covered by the righteousness of Jesus, based upon our new position as a child of God. God sees us as he sees His Son, without failure, without sin. So, Andrew, don’t buy into the lie of satan that your failures in life will send you to hell. If you have read your Bible, you know that your failures will not send you to hell once you have accepted the free gift of salvation and know Jesus as your Lord and Savior. I know that you know this because of the very fact that you are wrestling with these questions in your life.

          13. Everyone that has written me is so great, and I know sincere. No one knows but me, as to why God betrayed me. I am not a moron that doesn’t know and understand every word in the bible. For ya’ll, the words must hold some truth for you, and I am glad. But, tonite when I go to bed, my wife will still be gone, the bible will still be full of half truths, and for the God that time does not effect; someone tell Him it well effects his “children.” I don’t know why I keep looking back at this site. I would bet everything I have that people are helped on here.

            I am beyond help, God loves us all; ok. He evidently loves some more than others. I accept it, I just chose to quit fooling myself with WORDS. They do nothing, they don’t bring any joy to me. God left the Jews in bondage for over 400 years. He allowed satan to murder the first ten children of Job. What God does to us is not like a “time out” or go to bed early. He allows us to experience hell on earth. The earth He made, by the arc angel satan He made, and the tree on knowledge He put in the Garden; knowing before hand that Adam and Eve were going to eat the fruit. Do you really think this is some amazing God that “loves” us? Live in hell and hope it will end in 10 to 20 years? And hope you will be rewarded? You see my problem.

            As I said before, God forsaked and has abandoned me! All the words in a 1000 bibles will ever bring me any comfort. The Lion of Judea, seems to have let the “lion” that roams the earth looking for people to kill and murder; win every time. When I read about all these people getting to live until they are 80 and 90 years old, and he could not even help my wife get to 63. Excuse me if I don’t want to blindly accept all this crap life has become for me. I tell you truly, without ever meeting or ever seeing any of you, keep on with your pursuits, but you gotta accept that God does forsake and abandon some. If you truly believe in the power of prayer, pray for God to get me off this earth asap. We all pray to keep out of hell, then pray for me to get out of this earthy hell. I would for you. Thanks.

          14. Andrew, I continue to pray for you, but not that “God to get you off this earth asap”, or that He “keep you out of hell”. I pray that He will bring clarity and truth to your understanding of Him and His love for you.

            It is interesting to me that there are so many historical accounts of people whose lives appear to be fully devoted to following God, no matter how difficult their life might be. They seem to have discovered a way to have peace and joy in the midst of the most painful of situations. I think of Paul, of course, and the several years that he praised God and ministered to the church with joy while sitting in a dreadful prison. And then I think of men who were martyred like Polycarp, who was trying to win to the Lord the very people who where lighting the fire that would burn him to death at the stake. How is it that some people find this great peace and joy in their lives, and for other people (many of us) peace and joy seems to be so elusive and distant at times? Is it God who offers peace and joy to some, but not to others? If so, then our entire existence may have nothing to do with anything that we do in our lives, and our lives may be totally at the whim of what God chooses to do, or not do, for us. If we conclude this for our self personally, then it would make sense to just sit and wait and see what God will do in our life because we have little or no ability to do anything to influence our life ourselves. But what if we are wrong? What if God had actually offered peace and joy to us, but we have just failed to find it for some reason? If we have failed to find peace and joy in our life, who is responsible? Is God responsible for our situation? Or might we have some element of at least partial responsiblity for our situation? These are some of the questions that we each must wrestle with in our life.

            The Bible tells us that God is unchanging; the same, yesterday, today, and forever. It tells us that we are offered the free gift of salvation and eternal life (through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus who died in our place to pay the full debt for all of our sins, past, present, and future) and we can do nothing to earn it on our own. And it tells us that God loves us immensely. When we read the Bible and conclude that these things may be true for others but are not true for us, then we should be careful because we have reached a conclusion that God is not who He says that he is. And when we hold this position, then we have concluded that the Bible is not trustworthy. God doesn’t want us to end up believing that the Bible is not trustworthy, so 1) He filled it with prophecies that have been fulfilled and can be verified through independent historians and 2) He released it to the world through a proliferation of widely distributed copies that can be verified against each other to maintain purity of the text. When we investigate through independent sources, we find that the trustworthiness of the Biblical text is very high based on the probabilities of all of events that we find matching up with the text.

            But in spite of the evidence, we can still conclude that the Bible is not trustworthy. We can hold this position, but we must recognize that the evidence is against us and we might well be wrong.

            So, some questions for each of us who has experienced the death of our spouse might be: If God brought them back to life, would that cause us to trust Him more? Would we devote our lives fully to following Jesus and being obedient to the Word of God? Would we give the Lord our thanks? How would we respond to Him? And would any response that we do last for any significant period of time?

            I know the weakness of my own heart, and how little my response might actually be if God were to bring my wife back to life again. I would surely rejoice greatly for a while, but it would not likely be sustained. I would probably be like the Hebrews who sang and danced on the shore of the Red Sea right after God had parted it and delivered them through it (Exodus 15:1-21), but then just three days later were grumbling (Exodus 15:24) again.

            I am praying for you Andrew.

    5. Andrew, I feel your pain in every word you’ve written. I’ve walked and stood in your shoes, as my dear wife of almost 40 year died on January 25th, 2017. Your love for your wife seems much as mine was, as we were pretty much joined at the hip. We would have celebrated our 40th anniversary on February 28th. By the depth of your words I can tell that your faith before your wife’s death was very sincere and deep. Mine wasn’t so. I was never a non-believer, just didn’t know where I stood, as so many others have felt and said.

      I think the moment I believed again was on Thanksgiving evening, 2016. With everything wrong with her body, as noted in the excerpts below, she said Grace surrounded by family, stating her love for Jesus and thanking him for everything we had come through for the past 20 years of her life. I saw the absolute joy and belief in her face and decided then that I wanted to believe as she did. I accept that my faith was not as strong as yours because I never felt the anger at and the loss of trust in God, so it was hard for me to feel betrayed. If you wish, I’d be glad to send you the complete email I sent out. Since this is my first visit to this site I don’t know how the site operates I won’t put my email address out to the world but if you have a way to privately let me know yours, I’ll be glad to send you the email. If not, please accept my sincere feeling of sorrow for the grief that you are now experiencing, I’m now walking that trail myself. Here is a portion of the e-mail I sent out after my wife’s death:

      “Our dear family And friends, as many of you know, our dear Jean passed away January 25th, after contracting the flu, exacerbated by follow-on pneumonia and MRSA (sepsis). Her scleroderma weakened immune system just could not fight off those serious issues for 12 days in the ICU, the last 5 of which were on the ventilator. After speaking to the doctors I decided to override her DNI wishes and put her on the ventilator because I thought perhaps with the help of the ventilator we could possibly resolve either the pneumonia or MRSA infection, leaving her with only one remaining infection to hopefully resolve. After 5 days on the ventilator, we temporarily stopped it for a very short time but she was under such fear and duress trying to breathe on her own that we restarted the ventilator. It was apparent at that time that she was only being kept alive by the ventilator, which she had been so strongly opposed to in our many previous discussions about such things. The kids and I were in agreement that we should not continue to let her suffer thru repeated attempts on the ventilator so I asked that she be heavily sedated so she would never again feel pain, anxiety or fear, and I authorized removal of the ventilator, the most painful and devastating decision of my life. She passed away peacefully 2 hours later. I was very reluctant to reveal such personal detail about Jean’s passing but all of her loving relatives and friends should know that we did everything possible to keep our Jean with us and we did our best.

      Most of you also know that Jean and I were very private people, not prone to attracting attention to ourselves. We discussed many times whether or not either of us would want some sort of obituary or formal memorial service and we both decided that with so many of our friends and relatives scattered across the country, that neither of us wanted these things to bring attention to ourselves and to inconvenience so many people who would want to attend from far away. In Jean’s case, I know she has already written her own obituary in your hearts and minds by way of her obvious love and caring for each of you and you will always remember and treasure her memory. In that light I’ve chosen to pay my tribute to my Jean with my version of our life together, which was truly an on-going celebration, and I hope you will all celebrate privately in your own way as a remembrance of her.

      Eulogy is probably the typical term used here (I prefer to say Tribute) and is not usually delivered by the surviving spouse, but I do feel that I am better qualified than anyone else to do so, so I will call it my Tribute To Jean, believing that is much more fitting for the love of my life. And, also because I’ve spent almost every day of the last 41 years with my Sweetie Pie…..it’s truly a special love story.

      I first met ‘Shorty’ in 1975 at a New Beginnings group in Ft. Collins, a week or so before Mother’s Day. I had been playing Tennis all day so was as red and stinky as a boiled crawfish, and fatefully dropped uninvited into this group. Looking across the room I spotted this little person sitting by herself. Just as I looked at her, she turned her head and looked at me with those beautiful sparkling eyes and a smile that sent my heart into my throat…and that was it for me…she at that moment had completely stolen my heart away. I was too flummoxed to talk to her so I got her name and number from one of her friends, called her the next day and I picked her up at her home. We had a very enjoyable time having coffee and conversation and she invited me to her home for Mother’s Day dinner, where I met her children, whom I came to love as my own. We both worked in Ft. Collins for a couple of years where I worked for WaterPik and she worked for an accounting firm. We made and retained many dear friendships from our “WaterPik days”.

      We built 2 houses, bought 7 others and made 10 major household moves during all our years together, sometimes because of our itchy feet or favorable market conditions and sometimes for reasons I can’t remember. We enjoyed living in the mountains a coupla times with the birds, bears and raccoons, and were even evacuated a few times because of forest fires. Everything we did was an adventure. We climbed a few 14’ers, went to mountain man rallies, bluegrass concerts, and ate and stayed in too many funky old places to mention; just 2 people in love discovering each other. We RV’ed full time for a couple of years after she was diagnosed with scleroderma in 1996, hauling around many liters of her peritoneal dialysis fluid…nothing slowed us down. We would simply pull off the road, drain out the old fluid and recharge her with the new…up and down the west coast several times. We also RV’ed down to Cajun country for 2 different OHS class reunions. We always drove along singing along with John Denver, Van Morrison, Fats, Rod Stewart, Willie and pretty much every CD we had on board. Sometimes we didn’t know where we were going the next day but we were on the road again. We would meet dear friends on a moment’s notice in Port Aransas, Las Cruces, Tucson and many other great places on the west coast. Shorty handled all of this like a super trooper and never once complained. After those 2 years we continued to RV sporadically for 8 more years, covering every inch of western Colorado and every state west of I-25, and even followed the Lewis and Clark Trail from beginning to end.

      The Spring, Summer and Fall of 2016 were really especially difficult for my Sweetie and I began to develop a knot in my stomach that something bigger and more serious was going on. Now and then she’d catch me looking at her with a tear in my eye when she was struggling to do something which had heretofore been very easy for her. She’d walk over, give me a hug and say in her “stern” voice “Suck it up Smitty, there are folks out there much worse off than me”, just to encourage me and I’d hold her until the emotion of the moment faded. Imagine, her consoling me, who’s never had a sick day in his life…I marveled at the strength and attitude of this precious little soul. She’d always call me Smitty when she really, really wanted my attention. She struggled through Thanksgiving at our place, shared with Dana, Frankie and my sister Marie, with the 3 of them graciously doing most of the work. Then of course there was the 72 dollar turkey. Ask me about this story sometime. Toward the end of December and beginning of January, her energy level was fading rapidly and I believe that Influenza A had started it’s job on her.

      I never really thought that such a gentle and precious loving woman could so devotedly love someone like me, basically a critical and judgemental cob (hey, inside we all know what we are). I think she saw me as a major fixable project and she was able to knock off some of the rough spots, much to my and others’ benefit…but I wouldn’t let her organize my office, to her chagrin…actually I threatened her with more kitchen suggestions if she touched my office. She truly made me a better man though and I realized it more than anyone.

      She dearly loved Jesus and her Lord and Savior and I so much envied her deep belief. I, like so many people, am stuck somewhere in between but would really love to believe as she did. I could write volumes and many anecdotes about this special person I knew as Jean, Shorty, Precious Pie, Sweetie and just Precious. We would talk and joke about what each of us would do if the other went first. She’d say that if she went first, I’d be trolling for hot babes in my Corvette within a week. I’d say that if I went first, she’d have some old gigolo sitting in my Corvette within a few days. We could laugh and joke that way because we both knew we would grow old together, no matter what. I can honestly say that My Love was the best human being I’ve ever known.

      All the cards, emails and phone calls I’ve received from all of you have been very comforting and while they can make me very emotional for the moment, they also remind me of the love and respect you had for her…and I so sincerely thank each of you. More than a few folks have stated that it’s also very hard on the caregiver to deal with a seriously ill person. That may be true in some ways but I actually considered it a privilege and honor for 20 years to be able to help in my small ways to research and manage her prescriptions and appointments for such a wonderful loving person. If those small things could relieve a little of her stress, it was never viewed by me as burden and I’d do it all again in a heartbeat. Words cannot begin to describe my love and devotion to this marvelous woman, as it were a dream come true…which still has this old mossback having trouble believing she chose him.”

      Andrew, I know your love for your wife was certainly as deep as mine and perhaps you can find a little peace in your life again. After my Jean died, I finally found the strength a month later to thank God for giving me the extra 15 years with her that I didn’t expect, due to the scleroderma. I’ve been seeking His Grace ever since, an unearned favor.

      1. Hank, I am so very, very happy for you. You have great faith. I wish I had it too. How ever, God abandoned my wife and I. No Holy Spirit to comfort me. Jesus said, “blessed are those that mourn, for they shall be comforted”. You can not know how hard it is for me to not write a thousand cuss words here and call God every name in the book. In my 65 years of life, I NEVER have asked God for anything as serious as the life of my wife. So this is either proof that God is not real, or a big liar. It makes no difference now. I hope and wish well for you. I have always closed letters to my friends with God Bless You; know I would not wish that on a dog. That is a false saying. God does not bless, at least not everyone.

        1. Andrew, Thank your for being happy for me but I did not and do not have great visible and practiced faith….yet. I never once prayed for God to save my wife’s life, and neither did I pray for the lives of the 2 sons we lost. Our youngest died at 28 by suicide in 1998 and our eldest died at 53 of a heart attack in 2016. Our grief was inconsolable.

          As stated in my letter above, I was never a non-believer, being raised Catholic and all. I just ignored God for the last 62 years after 2nd Communion. You may wonder why I didn’t pray for my wife or sons’ lives. It was simply that I thought I would be a ridiculous hypocrite asking for help when I had ignored God for so long. As a result, I left the praying to my wife, who had such a deep faith, which I finally realized at Thanksgiving of 2016. She was saying a Thanksgiving meal prayer and I watched her face beaming with total joy and happiness while thanking Jesus for all his blessings, after all we’d been through. That’s when I decided I wanted to have her truly deep faith. But it took weeks after her death on January 25th for me to finally ask Jesus to help me get through this grief and pain I’m going through now. Yup, me the hypocrite, finally asking for help, driven to it by watching my wife say a meal prayer. And not only being a hypocrite but me also being very selfish by waiting until after her death to say my Johnny come lately prayer to God, for me. How selfish can I get? Well, I want to join her someday, that’s how selfish I am. I began going back to church 4 weeks ago and have cried through every service, including today. I told a very good friend of mine that I felt like a total hypocrite and he simply said there’s no better place for a hypocrite than in a church…floored me with that simple truth.

          After I read your reply on April 7th, I went back to the email my wife wrote to family and friends in 2012 after the death of our eldest son. It marveled me as I read her sincerity in accepting what had happened. I have posted her email below. She, as I, have always believed that God allows things to happen but doesn’t cause them, or owed us some special favors. You perhaps thought otherwise and asked Him, because of your deep faith, to save your wife.

          Andrew, I most sincerely wish I could bring some peace into your tormented life. Maybe my wife’s simple display of faith below will help you try to find your way back from your despair. This Johnny come lately hypocrite will say a prayer for you.
          ………..

          “Most Gracious and All Loving Heavenly Father: We pray that you would help us during this time of loss and overwhelming grief, with lives so filled with pain and heartache. Our thoughts, our hearts, our prayers go especially to Karen, Mark’s beloved wife, companion, friend and to his beautiful girls, Riley and Haley whom he would have moved the heavens and earth for if it were possible. Mark was filled with love for his wife and children, for his many family members and his many, many friends. We are being blessed during this dark time by your love, strength and comfort. And by the love shown to us by so many with thoughts, prayers, letters, cards and visits of comfort.

          “As a friend said, when we think of Mark, we are transported to a warm and happy place for we were so blessed to have had Mark in all our lives, though the time here with us was way too short. If we walk with God, we get where he’s going. And how do we know where is God is going? That is none of our business for God has his own plan for each of us; our job is to keep walking with Him (no matter how hard the coping is, how much we despair, how much we question why our Mark was taken from us before we were ready to let him go).

          “Mark’s life was an adventure. We all know how he thrived in this wonderful world: his love of the outdoors, camping under your magnificent stars, skiing the mountains and all his adventures on his bike. And his love of teaching all this to his beautiful daughters and cooking for ‘his girls’ and passing on that legacy. Now, you’re taking Mark on another adventure, the biggest adventure of his life. And when your time for us is right, we will one by one be joining Mark on this adventure.

          “Dear Lord, grant us your love, your peace, your comfort and your strength. We pray this and all things in the name of your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.”

          1. Hank, While you have come through a difficult and painful and sad time, I sense that you are now on the path following Jesus in your life. I am excited for you! Our God has a way of taking the most difficult of situations and turning them around for good in our life.

            Oh Father, Come close to Hank in this time. Let him sense Your presence in a very real and powerful way. Lead him in his life and teach him Your truth and Your ways. Give him a passion to read Your Word and to study it daily. Cleanse his heart and mind of any thoughts of the past years of his life that may cause him regrets, and keep him focused on You as You bring a new life to his spiritual journey. Fill Hank to overflowing with Your peace and joy in his life. Bring others to him who will invite him into your body of believers. Cause him to be filled with an abundant love for Jesus, as he begins to realize the infinite measure of Your love for him. Wrap Your arms around Hank and hold him close, letting him rest in You as his Father. Speak Your love into his life this day and always forevermore! I ask these things in the name of Jesus, our Lord and Savior, Amen!!!

  10. Grief takes us through many strong emotions, and everyone has their own experiences. For some it’s overwhelming; they lose faith, and sorrowful as it is, some give up on life, God, and hope. Faith comes by hearing the Word of God in our hearts. Sometimes that faith has no real roots, and those who have no roots wither and die. The Word of God is Truth, and light, and fact but we are flesh weak and tossed about by our emotions like waves in the ocean. Happiness is an emotion, where joy is from the Holy Spirit. We can rejoice in the Spirit because of Jesus’s work on the cross. That joy is apart from the emotional roller coaster that grief causes, because it’s based on Jesus and not us.

    1. Thank you for your helpful comments. My wife Ruth died of cancer on 3rd January 2017, we first started our relationship 40 years ago, she was 66 when she died. It seems older than many of the cases mentioned here but still it feels like she died too young. We do not know how heaven will look in great detail and we have to accept this. However it is plain from 1 Thessalonians:4 that we will indeed see our loved ones again if they have died in the Lord. From this it seems likely we will be in some form of relationship even though the marriage bond may have been changed. Much can be speculated we simply have to hold onto faith this side of death.

      1. I believe God hears are hearts cry. The Bible says there are no secrets before Him. Knowing this has at times given cause for concern now and then, but it also says He is faithful to forgive all of our sins. During my time as a Christian God’s word has shown me that the biggest mistake people make about the Bible is they really don’t know what it says, or they don’t know enough. The answers to all the problems that man has are in God’s word but sadly our spiritual ears are not receptive or we lack faith.

        Now that my wife is not here with me my grief still remains very painful. I am reminded of a story a pastor told at a church I attended. He told us of a young child afraid to go to sleep at night, that child cried out every night until her father would come into the bedroom and comfort her. She said to her father she was afraid to be alone. Her father would set by her on the bed and tell her she was never alone because Jesus was always with her. But the little girl replied to her father daddy I know Jesus is with me, but I need some one in the flesh. I often feel that also; it’s what makes me so lonely now, the need for human contact. Yes we will see our loved ones in the Lord again, but for now the pain is all I feel.

        1. I lost the love of my life to after several years of health issues then cancer, Jan 22 2017. His strength in his coming death still amazes me, along with his faith between chemo and numerous surgeries. How he endured what he did, I truly can’t comprehend. But even through all of it he kept a good outlook and would look for blessings in everything. Though the days are hard, I thank God for sharing him with me. I would rather grieve his loss, than not to have known him at all, or the love we shared.

          1. Thanks for your wonderful words. Yes grief is part of the ongoing love story which is not finished at death. Those few who do not grieve are in fact missing out. How much the greater will our joy be when we see Jesus return in glory along with our departed loved ones. It won’t be so long.

        2. Patrick, Along with the loneliness and the lack of human contact, I remember other things that caught me by surprise. Within a couple of weeks after my wife’s death, everyone who had been coming by almost every day all returned to their lives. And the feeling of guilt when I found myself with spare time in life, instead of all of my time being used to care for her, that was an unexpected emotion. And the times in the middle of the night when I would sit on the floor in the closet and hold her clothes close to remember her smell. And all of the times that I would call our home when no one was at home so that I could hear her voice on the long voicemail greeting, and I would call over and over and over. At the time I thought that these behaviors of mine were very odd, but I have since discovered that they are actually very common things that we do to find a bit of closeness and comfort and sweet memories as a soothing balm for our loss. May the Lord bring His Peace and Joy to comfort you in the midst of your pain…

          1. Yes I too look at my wife’s photos on the iPad several times a day. Looking back is bound to be part of our grief. We should also try to discipline ourselves to look forward. The resurrection is central to our faith. Jesus has bought our redemption let us look forward to being with Jesus and our loved ones and reign with Him in a new creation.

          2. Thank you for sharing this. I’m sure it will help many. I’m so sorry for your loss… truly. But I’m so glad that you are sharing this part of your grief journey with us. I pray it helps you and others who are also walking this very, very difficult path. May God help, and comfort you and send others your way to comfort you.

          3. Trevor, While it is good to move forward in our life, God doesn’t want us to forget our past. Just think about all of the times in the Bible where He reminds His people to remember… to remember what he has done for us. I have pictures of my late wife on my desk at work, along with many other family pictures. In one of the pictures she is wearing a shirt that has a big heart on it and says “Make a Difference”. That is SO like her! When I look at that picture, I am reminded of who she is and how she lived while here with us, and I’m encouraged to live in that same way myself… always trying to make a difference, serving the Lord. Treasure those pictures and enjoy those sweet memories. Be encouraged by them and let those memories be an energy that drives you forward in your life, passionately following Jesus as you run a strong race, eventually crossing the finish line into eternity. May the Lord’s overflowing blessings be upon you!

          4. M, I’m Hank. I couldn’t find a reply button on your very thoughtful post to me on April 12th.. I really appreciated your prayer and yes, I’m heading in the right direction for my faith. Again, thanks for taking the time to show you understand my grief and to care.

  11. My husband passed away 1 year ago tomorrow (May 23, 2017). I miss him terribly. He was only 58. He had multiple health problems (some that we didn’t know he had) and had 3 major surgeries in a 2 1/2 year period. In the last 4 months of his life I saw the physical and mental changes but didn’t want to accept what was happening. He died 5 weeks before our 3rd wedding anniversary. We met, what is now 12 years ago, by accident. Both of us having very difficult marriages in the past but knew that what we had was special.

    He actually proposed to me in a jewelry store. My life with him was magic!! Now, I am left all alone, the house we shared will be gone as I can’t afford it. I may be losing my job soon. I am VERY many years from retirement. My life is so empty without him. We spent all of our non-working time together. How do I cope without him? His children are wanting to go thru his things and I can’t even think of doing that at this time. When seeing what was happening to him I asked him if he was going to continue to fight for himself and for us and I was told “yes, unless God tells me otherwise.” Oh how I miss him!!!!!

    1. RaeAnn, Your post caused me to reflect back in my mind to remember what my life was like 30 days after my wife died. It is a lonely and difficult time. I remember sitting on the floor in our walk-in closet in the middle of the night… for hours… so that I could enjoy the smell of her clothes and imagine her close to me and just sit and talk to her (although it was a one-sided conversation) and sit and pray. It was a deeply emotional time of life.

      It was a time in life where her family was struggling with their own emotions that were difficult to deal with on top what I was dealing with. I wanted to just let everything in our home sit just as it was… undisturbed But they wanted to come and go through all of her things… and they were angry at me because I wanted to wait a while first. Their anger towards me… I never did really understand that… but it is apparently quite a common reaction from your spouse’s family.

      After a few months, I invited them to go through all of her belongings and take whatever they desired… which they did. But even after that, they were still angry at me… for many years. It can all be very confusing to understand.

      RaeAnn, Take time for yourself. Don’t be pressured to do what you are not yet ready to do. This is probably a time where it feels as if everyone who was around in the last days of his life have all deserted you… It’s a sad and lonely time… but it will pass over time. If you have a female friend who you can confide in, tell her that you need an extra measure of her friendship in your life right now… just to sit and talk and have someone around. And spend time in prayer… talking to the Lord. He will be the source of your peace and comfort and will lead you on this journey through the desert.

      Oh Father, Come close to RaeAnn in this time. Wrap Your arms around her and hold her safe and secure. Let her sense Your presence in a very real way. Comfort her in the midst of her sadness. Give her a glimpse of her future, that she might see that You are in control and You will be with her all through this journey. Increase her love for You to a depth that she has never known before. Cover her life with Your infinite love and give her a hope that passes all human understanding. Oh Father, do something unexpected in her life today that brings a smile to her face. I ask these things in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus, Amen!!!

    2. RaeAnn, I am so grateful to find this website. I lost my soulmate 3 weeks ago. He was only 66. I was born in Belgium 58 years ago; I met my other half 9 years ago he was born in France in a city very close to Belgium. My entire life was extremely chaotic emotionally, born from 2 artists parents.

      My father tormented me during my entire childhood. He actually hated children. We had to run away when I was almost 10. Before that my mum was in love and could not protect me from his violent outburst towards me – he terrorized me. I was seriously beaten from starting from age 1 and 1/2 – my mum would always rescue me after the beating and comfort me. Later I became my mother’s mother and I always loved and cared for her even after having experienced abuse from her as well because I knew she was in pain and always sorry after hurting me. Because I had to do the shopping I had been the prey of 2 different pedophiles as well. I experienced bullying in school. And teachers did not like me because I was not a good student. My father never said sorry and never gave me a present or a cuddle.

      I went on a quest to find love and if I had to share all the traumas that I experienced in my life -no one will believe me because I tried to make the most of the little I had and I love to give and that’s what I did. I always trusted in God. My mum was a Catholic even though she had lost most of her faith. My Catholic background led me to devote most of my life to the new age mysticism… Until I met Didier.

      To make the story short, 9 years ago we met and I became a true Christian -thanks to his knowledge of the Bible we grew together in spite of the bad treatment we experienced from his ex and his son.

      He had his first mild heart attack in 2002 after his partner of 9 years (she had completely devoted her life to the Assembly of God). After the birth of their son she got PND as well (Post natal depression) and when Didier refused to join that AOG church and when his beloved son was barely 1 1/2 she took 5000 dollars from him and abducted his son to disappear for 6 months. Didier told me he was crying so much until he had his first mild heart attack. He begged the minister of the church to talk to her and after 6 months was able to see his son. Then she manipulated him. He waited 7 years for her to return. By now his son started to lack respect to his father and that is when he appeared in my life.

      The first thing he told me is that he was a fundamentalist Christian and I was glad because I prayed for such a miracle to happen in my life and it did. But, at the end he died of a broken heart-no one can imagine what we went through with his ex a “Christian”. Like you -I do not have my home either; I have no family and my 2 closest friends are in Belgium.

      All the people around me were and are very supportive. They are not close friends but are helping me. It is the most painful experience of my life. He died with me. 2 weeks before his passing he contracted pneumonia. His 16 year old son had totally abandoned him (we had not heard from him for 2 months) and then he had a heart attack. We did not have Christian friends.

      I am sleeping in my storeroom because I cannot even enter our bedroom. The pain is unbearable and I pray God please let me die. But I know that I am tested so I don’t know what will happen next. I walk and do things like a robot. But, in reality I am now experiencing the abandonment I felt as a child and the pain is unbearable. My only hope is God. God bless you all for your support.

      1. Emilienne, You are in a difficult situation, and I can feel your pain. I’ve been sitting here praying for you for a while now and I will share what’s on my heart for you as I continue to pray. Oh Father, I lift up Emilienne to you as she is overwhelmed by the pain of losing Didier. Come close to her in this time and help her to learn to know You as her Father… not as a flawed earthly father who has failed her, but as her Heavenly Father who loves her with an infinite and perfect love and will never fail her.

        Come close to Emilienne and wrap Your loving arms around her and hold her securely on Your lap. Speak to her so that she hears Your voice and knows that You are close. Bring peace that passes all human understand to her and help her to relax in You. Speak Your love into her life each and every day, to let her know that You are always near to her. Give her a hope for her future that she can cling to. Help her to share all of her pain with You through prayer… puddles of tears in the middle of the night. Be with her in that conversation of prayer and take her pain from her.

        Bring rest to her soul in special ways that cause her to smile because she knows that it is from You. Oh Father, be with Emilienne in this most painful time in her life and be with her forevermore. May she be relieved of her pain by Your loving hand. I bring these requests humbly to You and lay them at Your Throne in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus, Amen!!!

  12. To every widow greeting in Christ, My name is Patrick. I found this website one day just looking for some suport. So this is sort of an update on my current status since Brenda my wife passed January 3, 2016. Much has happened since then. My daughter who took me in for a short while also threw me out, and I was homeless for a couple of months April, and May. Feeling betrayed I’ve experienced even deeper grief, and mourning.

    But the Lord has privided me a apartment in a really nice area in north Ohio, and I live in a area like I grew up in; the weather is beautiful, and people are generally friendly. I feel this is a good place to spend my later years. I live near my nephew who after over 30 years apart we are reunited. We were always close like brpthers, so I thank God. Loneliness is still my biggest issue, without my soulmate. She was always supportive no matter what life brought, love endures all things. Biblicly speaking I’ve learned to be content with whatever comes my way, and with whatever I have. Evil in my life has actualy strenghtened my faith, for the truth has indeed made me free.

    On the cross Jesus said “forgive them Father for they know not what the do. Thoses for have tried to harm me I forgive, for I understand they know not what they do.” Besides the Lord commands me to forgive. I have learned many of my days were evil, and many were joyful. 35 years with Brenda were joyful. So I thank God for His Word, and for the tears because they have washed away those years. No matter how bad your life experiences are, Jesus is right there, faith is beleiving on Him.

    1. Thank you Patrick for your encouraging words, positive and faithful. I lost my wife Ruth an exact year later on 3 January 2017. We would have been married 40 years this coming December. Sometimes I ask why not longer but then I am thankful that the Lord was so gracious in bringing her into my life for such a period of time. Also let us be encouraged that our loved ones are in the presence of the Lord now along with other believing friends and family, seeing so much Glory. We do suffer for the moment but then so be it if they now have seen their suffering replaced by perfect joy. You are right to forgive those wrongs we all experience are painful now but are nothing as we come into His eternal presence.

    2. My spirit I cannot commit. Married 35 years, no longer 1 flesh but the two made 1. When your spouse is taken, you are left behind, alone, health about gone too. The lack of control, and comprehension of God makes you say if so Amen. I’m not righteous in any way as Job. I thank the Father for Christ’s Cross. Death is GAIN. The CROSS IS GLORY.

  13. Hello everyone, I wanted to express how much I feel that we are going through the process of losing a spouse. My husband died in a single car accident on his way to work on June 16, 2017. He was 55 years old. I just turned 45 years old yesterday. We had only been married 5 1/2 years but knew each other for almost 14. We did not have any children although he did have a son from a previous marriage.

    I find that I struggle with many things and I will try to ask what I stuggle with most in hopes that someone can help me understand. At first I was in shock, but now I am grieving, crying every day and asking God many things.
    I am not angry at God and I am not angry at my husband. I am hurt in the manner that my husband died and find myself questioning “was that his time to go” in other words was that his appointed day and time to leave this earthly world?

    The other thing I question is if he is with the Lord. He was raised Catholic and I believe he loved the Lord and served him to the best of his ability. If he forgot to ask for forgiveness before he died is he still in the presence of the Lord. I want to know he is okay and that no matter what that his day to leave his earthly home was that day.

    Does this make any sense? I grieve for him, not for me. I miss him and I feel so lonely and I pray that I find comfort. Thank you.

    1. Amy, You are in a time of grieving that can be pretty overwhelming, and you a wrestling with many deep questions. It is easy to become consumed by it all. If you come back and read this reply, let me know, then we can discuss your questions one-by-one and maybe help you to work through them with the Lord’s help. You can rest in confidence that the Lord has a plan to turn all of your current pain into eventual good for His glory. But often it takes a while for His plan to begin to emerge. You will be in my prayers…

      Oh Father, I lift up Amy to You at this time. Come close to her in a special way so that she senses Your presence like never before in her life. Hold her close and secure in Your loving arms. By Your Spirit, speak softly into her life to comfort her and draw her deeply into sweet times of prayer with You, so that she knows that You are always right there with her. I bring these requests to You in the name of our precious Lord and Savior Jesus, Amen!!!

  14. Hi I recently lost my husband on 12 August 2017. He was 48 years of age and I am 43. We’ve been together since 1996 and married in 2005. I keep on blaming myself for taking him to a government hospital of which was not his opinion. I continue asking God why he didn’t come to my mind to stop me from taking him to the hospital. I always wonder where was God in that hospital to save his life because we depend on him. The Bible says he doesn’t sleep so what happened on that day? He was not really sick, just needed him to be observed by doctors. I don’t know what went wrong. I am so angry with myself for that bad decision and could not pray anymore until a few days ago. I have seen a difference in my life and have become strong although it’s not easy to be without my husband. I hope God will continue to reveal himself by showing care to all those who lost their love ones.

  15. My husband of 24 years died very suddenly of a massive heart attack 2 weeks ago, he was only 58. I cannot get the image of that night out of my head. It was dark outside and I found him on the driveway face down. Every time I think of that night I experience panic, deep sadness and “if only.” My heart and my children’s hearts are broken into a million pieces and we don’t know how to move forward. I can’t sleep in the master bedroom, in fact I sleep very little. I ask myself so many times a day if we will ever be happy again. 😢

    1. Melanie, how our hearts break for you and your kids. As a Fire Department Chaplain I have been with many women and men who have gone through what you are experiencing right now – the sudden loss of a spouse. Everything you said is very normal in getting through the grief cycle. You need to know there is no set “time line” for when you will get through this. Every one is different. In essence you are experiencing a Post Traumatic Stress response to what you experienced. The best thing you could do if it’s available to you is to find a good grief counselor to help you walk through the recovery journey. There are also grief support groups in most communities that can be helpful in normalizing what you are experiencing/feeling right now. But because of the specific level of trauma you are going through the best thing for you is to work with a counselor who understands these dynamics.

      You didn’t say if you had any faith walk, but I can tell you from personal experience those who do place their faith and trust in Jesus Christ in times like these tend to recover more quickly. We’ll be praying or you Melanie – that God will meet every need and that you will find comfort in Him. He loves you and His heart is breaking for you as well. ~Steve Wright

      1. Dear Brother in Christ, I’m Monica, I lost my husband Ryan – 36 years old, on the 15th of Jan 2018 leaving behind his 2 beautiful daughters. Been married for just 11 years. Have gone through a lot of pain, same time I heard an inner voice calling me to visit the blessed sacrament. From the time I started visiting the sacrament with my kids, I felt a positive strength in me something that is inexpressible. It’s kept me alive and feel Ryan’s presence and most of all God’s inner words asking me to be strong. I have received a message from God, that Ryan will be my husband forever after I meet him in heaven in the second coming of our Lord Jesus. I shall wait for him until then and pray for his soul to rest in peace. I pray for all the widows and the widowers who have gone through this. Hope that this brings happiness and strength in their hearts. Amen