And the word Kate gave for this day is comfort.
There are several definitions for comfort but my favorite is the reference by the apostle, Paul, in 2 Corinthians 1:3-5. These are the verses upon which I have tried to base my life after being widowed in 2010.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ. 2 Corinthians 1:3-5 NASB
Our Father comforts us so that we can comfort those in any affliction with the comfort by which we are comforted.
The first moments of my widowhood were shock and horror. A surreal sense of what was going on around me. I was there but I wasn’t there. Then the blessed shock set in. Shock insulates the brain and the heart, and even the stress on the body, until we are a little better able to cope. And then reality hits. The widow’s world is changed in an instant. Whether it’s sudden, as in an accident, or a long time in coming, as was my widowhood, our life partners are alive and breathing (and so there is hope!) in one second and irrevocably gone in the next.
I have lost my parents, my in-laws, my grandparents, so many friends. None of them quite compare.
And so, as soon I could put two coherent thoughts together, I knew that I needed to at least try to comfort other widows, long-time widows who still struggle, “baby widows,” and those who are moving forward but occasionally have a slip backwards, in the same fashion that widows from my church comforted me.
The best words of wisdom I got were from my sweet friend, Sara Phelps, who now dances in Heaven. “Your happiness is gone for a time but your joy is still there.” And she referred to my joy in Christ. She was so right! And, in the right time, the Lord sent to me two comforters, my Aaron and Hur, to be my very special friends for a season.
Do you need comforting? Have you been comforted? With whom and how do you share that with which you have been blessed?