Who are your support people?
Who is your go-to person? Do you have that person who you can share with what you are going through? A trusted friend to help with financial decisions? That friend who is really practical? Someone who will encourage you? A spiritual mentor? Your husband was most likely your go to person with decisions that needed to be made. But things have changed. As women we most likely each have that one amazing best friend who we can talk to about anything. That may not be enough.
In reading Miriam Neff’s book Where Do I Go From Here? She has offered some great advice… She calls these people her Board of Directors. Miriam’s thoughts:
- Choose a godly person who has experience a similar loss. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
- Choose a person who has financial wisdom who you trust. Psalm 24:1
- Choose a practical friend. Proverbs 15:22
- Chose a friend who is an encourager. Philippians 4:8-9
- Choose a friend with spiritual discernment and courage. Proverbs 27-17
- Choose a friend or relative whose priority is your well being. Proverbs 18:2
There isn’t one person that can be all of these to each of us. God seems to give each of us our own special gifts. Often times our court of trusted people changes with the loss in our life. Some of these changes are not always a blessing so I would offer caution as you allow new people to come into your life during this time of grief. It is so easy to allow someone in our lives during this time who may not necessarily have our best interest in mind. Please be careful and wise about these choices.
Each of these people who now come into your court have a benefit. Make sure those that who you choose to be your court of advisors are qualified in their strengths. Someone who has your best interest in mind – not their interest.
Be patient with yourself. There are few decisions that need to make immediately about your future. Many of us have been widowed for some time and some of you are new at this new journey in life. I totally agree with Miriam with her first point of choosing a godly person who has experienced a similar loss. This person has been down the same journey and has some amazing insight on how to navigate the early stages of widowhood.
Take time for you to reflect on the changes in your life. There are some big changes aren’t there? As you begin to choose these people in your court, take time to reflect the small changes in your life as well. These changes may be as simple as completing that simple task of cleaning your bathroom. Take these little things and begin a list of things to be grateful for. Title you list gratefulness… In time, you will discover you are healing and perhaps even helping a new widow along the way.
Before you know it, you may find you are able to go out for the first time, calling a friend for coffee, completing a new project that you thought you would never get to. Slowly you will heal. I am a list maker so for me this is an easy task. However, as a new widow this was not an easy task. One of the many promises God has given us is Proverbs 23:18-19 which reads: There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off. Listen, my daughter, and be wise and keep your heart on the right path. (Yes – I did change if from son to daughter)
My prayer for you is to find some of these treasured people in your life. You are not expected to go on this journey alone. We all need others in our path to help us through this journey. Blessings to each of you. May you continue to feel God’s arms wrapped around you.
PS… Permission granted from Miriam Neff