No matter how strong your faith, the death of a spouse can rattle it. That’s how deeply a heart can be broken. The richer the love, the worse the suffering.
Tricia and Robb’s love was like that, thanks to God’s grace and a lot of hard work. Early on in their marriage, Tricia felt ungrateful for Robb. Over time, her ingratitude grew into openly criticizing him. His quirks and idiosyncrasies, once so charming, became irritating.
But Tricia and Robb got to work and built a strong and fulfilling marriage. They even had a silent code with one another. He would squeeze her hand three times to say, “I love you.” She would return his squeeze twice to say, “You, too.”
It was a way of expressing their love to one another when they couldn’t do it verbally, like when they were sitting in church, or like the night Robb was so sick and weak from what they thought was the flu he couldn’t form words. With her at his bedside, he tapped lightly three times. She tapped twice.
Within hours, Robb was dead.
In those initial moments, as her world seemed to crumble beneath her, Tricia pulled a card from a Ziploc bag of Scripture verses she kept with her. On the card was Psalm 121:2, “My help comes from the Lord.”
As she read, she thought, “I know who holds the future, and I believe the kids and I will be okay, but I don’t know what to do next. I don’t know what to do right now.”
That uncertainty can be common in the days and weeks after a spouse passes away. It takes time to learn how to lean into the pain, to heal, and to live life again. Eventually, though, like Tricia, you may discover that God can help us to trust Him in the midst of all that’s happened and that we can move forward by slowly creating something new.
That process is rarely easy, but we hope to light the path for you. If you’re on a similar journey, I encourage you to tune in for our conversation with Tricia Lott Williford, our guest on yesterday’s radio program, “Reclaiming Hope After Losing a Spouse.”
Many of our listeners are walking the same difficult journey as Tricia. The way forward through the despair takes a lot of courage, support, and God’s love and grace. Tune in for her encouraging story online, or via our free phone app. I trust you’ll feel inspired and find hope and strength to take the next step.