“A friend loves at all times.” Proverbs 17:17
“Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art… It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things that give value to survival.” C.S. Lewis
Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up! Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken. Ecclesiastes 4: 9-12
I’ve heard it countless times as a widow from some wonderful and well meaning people. Early on, it was my married friends or some other person who thought they were helping. One time a pastor even said it to me, when I mentioned how tough it was to not be part of a couple or have the friendships I had anymore.
“God is your husband now. He is all you need.”
With every ounce of my being I know each person meant well and was trying to comfort me, even if there was no deeper true understanding of what I was going through.
Frankly though, they were wrong.
In the garden of Eden God was with Adam. Scripture says He was present, and He walked and talked with Adam. Yet, in Genesis God says “it’s not good for man to be alone.” (Genesis 2:18) So He created a help mate, a partner!
From that union forward we see many rich and beautiful relationships and marriages throughout God’s Word. To name just a few: Abraham and Sarah, Jacob and Rachel, Isaac and Rebeckah, and even Mary and Joseph.
We also see the need for a friend too, a go to person; Jesus had Peter, David had Jonathan, Naomi had Ruth, Abraham had Lot, Job had his close friends.
Please understand me. I believe God is good. He is Sovereign. I love Him and He loves me. He’s certainly provided, protected and loved me throughout. He’s set me apart as a widow. He has been there for me. He has become my husband in some tangible ways and no human will ever come before Him in my life again.
But I still need more! I need people. A tribe! Real live huggable, lovable people. And to be told otherwise goes against God’s word.
I need people who’ll show empathy and give me the freedom and encouragement needed to walk this path, even if they don’t get this at a deeper level because they haven’t experienced it. I need those who’ll spend time with me. Who’ll let me pour into them, and they into me. I need confidants and supporters. I need to be needed too.
We all need a group or tribe of people in our life.
Of course my “before” tribe looked very different than my “now” tribe, and I may lack the intimacy of marriage; but God Himself and my tribe have perfectly filled some of the more important voids.
My tribe consists of married, widowed, single, and divorced. My tribe blesses me every day. And I pray I bless them every day too.
Sisters, don’t settle. Don’t be fed the lies that we don’t need more because God is our husband now.
God will fill you up. He will heal you and move you forward. No one can be Him. But He shows us from Genesis on, we need a tribe!
Maybe it’s a tribe of one or two. Or it’s a tribe of ten or more. It doesn’t matter.
Just find your tribe! And let God bless you richly through them. Let Him use you too, to comfort and love them from the deeper places this journey has given you.
I encourage you to seek a tribe who can stand together with you united in faith, love, and friendship.
Father God, I thank You for my friendships and the way You use each of them in my life. I thank You that You’ve called me to be the kind of friend I seek in others. I thank You for Your constant presence in my life, and for being my husband. Yet, giving me so much more than I ever deserve in the tribe You’ve gifted to me. May I never forget how much You have loved me and provided for me in the absence of my earthly husband. In Your Matchless Name, Amen.
Erika 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 Erika or any of our writing team speak, please contact us via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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