a widows might widowhood support erika graham

Marital Bed

“And the two shall become one flesh…”

Mark 10:8 

I’m gonna say it.

The thing widows all think, but as Christians we don’t say.

I.  Miss.  My.  Marital.  Bed.

I miss the warmth and unity experienced there.  I miss the ease and selflessness that happened so perfectly there.  THE ONENESS.  The warm welcoming body that lay beside me.  The unison we experienced.  The desire we had for one another.  The deep intimacy and trust I felt in giving my entire body over to another.  The care and love found there.

As Christians, in a world that has perverted and twisted sex, it’s hard to say these things.  We are shamed into thinking that talking about sex is sinful.  Sex is certainly not something the widowed or Christian community talks about openly or comfortably.

But God didn’t make sex “dirty”, man did.  God created in us a desire towards one another.  He defined that desire, in Genesis, to be a good thing within the confines of His creation of marriage.  He tells us that in marriage we can experience the full glory of Him through our sexual intimacy. We can sacrificially give ourselves to another the way Christ gave Himself up for us. (Romans 5:22-32)

Yes, God ordains sex…when it’s under His authority and we obey Him.

We know because we experienced that God ordained oneness in our marriages.

But what happens when our husbands are gone?

My marital bed is now cold and harsh.  I roll over to an empty space. I have no husband to hold me, to make me feel beautiful, to desire me, or to even warm my feet and hands up when they’re freezing!

Sometimes I go back.  I have such deep meaningful memories of that bed and our years and nights spent there.  Babies were created there.  Pleasure and love was found there.  Deep trust and utter selflessness were solidified there.  Many prayers, and both happy and sad tears flowed there.  I miss it greatly.

Recently a reader asked our team if it was okay for her to pleasure herself to those memories.

Yes, I am going there!

Because, it’s something we all experience.  We all have desires in some facet or another.

As Christian widows we believe God is now our spiritual husband, but we are still human.. and we are all still alive!

As I’ve prayed over this myself and sought answers, I can tell you Scripture doesn’t give a definitive yes or no answer to this deep question.

Yet, I did find these important truths:

~ Scripture is clear that I’m no longer married and when I get to heaven I won’t be married again to my husband.  Matthew 22:30, Romans 7:2, 1 Corinthians 7:39 (read more here: Heaven and Marriage)

~ Scripture is clear that if I lust after another man outside of marriage in my mind and heart, whether I act on it or not, it is sin.  Matthew 5:28

And the two keys that apply to us now…

~ Scripture is clear that I am not to conform to this world.  But, I am to transform my mind by renewing it with God’s Word and His will for me now.  Romans 12:2

~ Scripture is clear I’m to seek to honor and obey God and allow the Holy Spirit to lead me in every area of my life.  Romans 2:6-8

So, what does this mean for us in this area?

It means since there’s no clear cut answer, we must take it before The Lord, Sister.  Allowing Him to reveal His will to us.  Allowing Him to work and move us.  Allowing Him to convict our hearts and minds here.

Allowing Him to then rule our heart, mind, and yes even our sexual desires.

Personally, I have been convicted to ask God to remove those desires from me, until (or if) He calls me to remarry.  It’s been a process and I still have to lay it before Him.  But He is helping me hold steadfast to my conviction.

Yet, maybe that’s not exactly where He will lead you. This is deeply intimate and personal, and something only God can clearly reveal, through His Spirit and His Word, what He wants you to do.

I have some questions for your personal reflection that will help you discern this:

~ What is my motive here, in other words, why do I think I need to do this?
~ Afterwards, how will it actually make me feel?
~ Is what I am doing honoring God and conveying that I trust Him to fill me up and meet ALL my needs?

God wants no idol before Him.  That means even the sexual memories (or any other memory) of our late husbands!

Sisters, widowhood is tough stuff with lots of layers. Walking this journey is not for the faint of heart.  It’s messy.  It’s painful.  It’s uncomfortable.  It’s hard.

But God is so much bigger and He’s got even this deeply personal and tough topic.  Take it before the Cross and watch Him grow you, help you, and convict you.

Father God, I am a woman with desires. Please help those desires to honor You still in every way.  Lord, block me from creating any idols in my mind and heart that would distract me from You.  Show me where I have sinned.  And protect me from those areas.  I lay even my physical desires and memories before You now.  In Your Matchless Name, Amen.

{If you missed it, earlier this week Lori talked about the loss of physical touch. Read it here: The Physical Loss}


295163_1927953164696_1418199297_31839733_2097799_nErika Graham is Director of Operations, and an author and speaker for aNew Season/A Widow’s Might Ministries. She resides in New Jersey with her daughter, twin boys, and her little fluffy puppy. She loves summers at the beach and all things chocolate. She lost her husband to suicide in June 2010. Erika has been called to share the victory she’s experiencing through Christ Jesus over the life God has ordained for her.

If you are interested in having her speak, please contact her via email at: admin@anewseason.net.

Other articles by this author click here.

Other articles on a similar topic:  The Physical Loss, Missing Pieces and The Two Shall be One


10 replies
  1. Paulette
    Paulette says:

    I am thankful for your article.. We are all right there with you….I so miss the sweet whisperings, the inside jokes, the playful hints, the inviting eyes, then the “afterwards”…..where the world has been forgotten, lying there talking, savoring the precious moments, not wanting to get up….beautiful memories..

    • Erika Graham
      Erika Graham says:

      YES! Thank you for sharing. We walk this tough road as a sisterhood with so many common bonds of loss. Blessings to you, sister.

  2. Noel Nail
    Noel Nail says:

    Wow, good for you for talking about something that no one else will. When I was newly widowed this was such an issue, one of the things that was so very hard, and I felt I had no one at all to talk to about it. Well done for bringing it up in an environment where not everyone wants to acknowledge that we are sexual beings, designed by God and given the gift of enjoying sex! http://goodgriefayoungwidowsjourney.blogspot.com

    • Erika Graham
      Erika Graham says:

      Yes!! Thanks so much for your encouragement. It’s a tough subject, but one worth “going there” on. I love your blog! 😉

  3. Melanie
    Melanie says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! I needed to read this, especially this morning. I lost my husband in August and his touch is something I still feel in my dreams. I miss him terribly and I know this physical part is just another portion of his loss that I need to lay at God’s feet. Bless you for helping me understand something I knew myself but couldn’t put into words!

    • Erika Graham
      Erika Graham says:

      Oh Melanie, I am so sorry for your loss. Those first months were extremely hard. I appreciate your encouragement. And I am honored God used me to bless you today. It’s a sacred thing and not easy to openly discuss or verbalize, but it is there, and it is another big part of our loss. I am lifting you up now sister. May God continue to protect and heal you. xo

  4. Christina
    Christina says:

    I wanted to comment on this article! I can so relate to what was said in this article about the marital bed. When my husband was alive he used to say that I enjoyed sex way too much and sometimes he felt like he could not keep up with my needs. After he died, almost 6 years ago, I first thought I needed to “re-create” those times on my own, but after a while I knew that it was wrong. I prayed that the Lord would take the desires I had for intimacy and sex away from me and that I would be pure before him. I have been ever since I prayed for the desires to be taken away. I miss my husband very much, and I miss our love making and our loving making alone, not just love making itself. I know that if the Lord has plans for me to re-marry he will put that man in to my path and things will work out according to God’s will for me!

    Thank you so much for discussing this subject, it is a tough one to talk about with just anyone!

    • Erika Graham
      Erika Graham says:

      Christina, thank you so much for being honest and sharing. It’s such a huge part of this journey and a tough topic to open up about. But, it’s real and it is something that we do need to grieve, let go of, and examine before the Lord. I am so thankful for His grace, love, and mercy in my life. And for His constant presence and direction. I am praying for God’s continued guidance for us both. xo

    • Erika Graham
      Erika Graham says:

      Hi Candy, thank you for your encouragement! I tried to gently say what needed to be said. 😉 Blessings to you, sister.

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