Monday, January 24, 2011
Dating after the death of a spouse ...
We admit that we haven't done much research on this topic (although I did find there is a book titled "Grieving for Dummies"). Cache' Connections has several members who have been widowed for a few or several years, and we've heard from them that although they feel ready to move forward, their children, family and friends don't feel they should. This has got to be a tough situation all the way around.
A few scriptures come to mind:
Ecclesiastes 3: 1 There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: ... 4 a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance.
Philippians 3: 12 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
1 Corinthians 7:39 A wife is bound to her husband as long as he lives. If her husband dies, she is free to marry anyone she wishes, but only if he loves the Lord.
1 Timothy 5:14-16 NLT says: 14 So I advise these younger widows to marry again, have children, and take care of their own homes.
And remember Ruth who was widowed and later remarried Boaz? We love how her mother-in-law served as a matchmaker, along with the fact that Ruth is part of the lineage of Jesus Christ!
After a proper time of grieving, it is time to move forward. Of course, one should never "forget" their former spouse. He or she no doubt holds a very special place in the widow's heart and history. The dominating question seems to be, however, what is a proper time of grieving? I'm sure everyone has a different opinion on this, and depending on how close they were to the deceased, their answers will vary. What it boils down to, IMHO (in my humble opinion), is that it is really the choice of the one who was left behind. He or she is the one who is left with a gaping hole in their life. He or she is the one who had established a way of life that very much included a partner. He or she in no way (hopefully!) created this circumstance. And alas, this person obviously is not suddenly blessed with the gift of singleness. Friends and family members should be respectful of the tender position the widow is left in, while realizing that harsh as it may sound, life is for the living.