Hello everyone! I hope you had a wonderful Easter! I enjoyed my time with family and friends!
Today’s topic was quite unexpected. I was watching a story about an older widow and it struck me instantly how as widows and widowers, we seem to “linger on” after our spouse has left this earth. It’s a strange feeling really. Time passes, whether it be a lot of time or very little time, and you feel like you are just there. Life is going on all around you and you are just there. It can be a lonely feeling, even when you are surrounded by people who love you. In “lingering,” you almost feel like you are waiting for something or someone. I have felt many times like I am standing on a runway watching planes take off and land but I can’t get on a plane and I can’t leave the runway. Does this make sense?
Before today, I never gave much thought to this, maybe I didn’t want to because it hurt. Regardless of why, it was time to think about it, face it, and write about it. I have felt many times over the last five years that I am simply “lingering” as life goes on around me. I don’t think I could have defined this feeling a year ago, much less recognize it. Although I may feel this way at times, I can tell you I am doing more than “lingering on.” I have a great career as a nurse in public health. My writing career is blossoming. I have wonderful friends and family, many of whom I saw over this Easter weekend. I have more ministry opportunities than I’ve ever had! I have many good things coming up this year and next! I believe it is how we spend our “lingering” time that matters. Do we spend it moping or do we spend it living? I decided a long time ago I was going to live and not dry up and die. I believe I am spending this “lingering” time well. Not only am I spending it well, I am helping others and making it count for something in this life.
I am a firm believer God heals us like He is peeling back the layers of an onion, one layer at a time. I can certainly say he has been doing a lot of that in me over this last year. He will never reveal or expose more than we can handle. He will also never do it in such a way that brings shame or condemnation nor will He use someone who will do those things. In my “lingering” He has been good! In my “lingering,” he has shown me who He is and who I am. In my “lingering,” he has given me a purpose. Whether I ever marry again is not important to me. If I do marry again, wonderful! The new man will be hand-picked by God (and myself) and I will welcome him into my life. If I do not marry again, I am quite content with that outcome. I have a purpose in my “lingering” and I am more than confident in God’s care for me. My joy does not come from another person, it comes from Jesus who keeps my late husband safe and who keeps me in my “lingering.” Do not shed tears for me! Rejoice that I have a purpose and still live to see that purpose come to life!
Widows and widowers I will address you now. I want to encourage you to find the purpose in your “lingering,” no matter how old you are now. God always has a plan – a better one than we could ever have for ourselves. I want you to live, really live while you have the time here on this earth. Your life is not over because your spouse’s life came to an end. Yes you will miss your mate. I miss him very much sometimes. However. I still have much life to live and much to do on this planet and I’m not going to let that pass me by. Your time has not yet come. You “linger on” for a purpose and a reason – it’s time to ask God what that purpose is. He will not neglect to tell you. Trust Him in your “lingering” as I do. If you don’t try to live, you will never know what it is to live. You can have a good life whether you marry again or not. You have a unique purpose, find it and live it. Let your “lingering” count for something much bigger than yourself. In your “lingering”, love. With much love and hope, Elizabeth