The cold days and long, dark nights that are characteristic in the winter leave the widow feeling like the winter of her soul may never end. We have all had seasons like this, when the biting cold outside matches the biting hurt we feel on the inside. Without the comfort and love of her husband, the winter months have way of intensifying the loneliness and grief the widow feels. Thankfully, God gives snow in the winter as a beautiful picture of His grace, and before we know it, the snow melts away reminding us that there is life after death. We invite you to be another picture of grace for the widow and fatherless this winter season. This list of practical ideas, compiled by widows, will help you bring light into otherwise dark places. For all you will do, we thank you!
1. Winterize her home:
- Service her heating system and change air filters.
- Check batteries in smoke detectors and fire alarms.
- Bring firewood
- Trim tree limbs that could be hazardous in a storm
- Provide flashlights and candles in case of power outages
- Change lightbulbs inside and out
2. Help her prepare for the year ahead:
- Financial planning
- Tax preparation
3. Give your time to preserve her memories:
- Offer an evening or weekend to help her sort through pictures—having someone to share these special moments with is a blessing.
- Take time to write out a specific memory of her loved one, and deliver it to her.
4. Thoughtful ideas:
- Buy her warm and cozy things:
- Winter gloves / scarf / warm socks / blanket—something to snuggle up to on the chilly nights
- Candles—these always have a way of making the holidays warmer and brighter, especially on the cold and dreary days.
- Fill her pantry with love:
- Tea, hot chocolate and coffee are always a safe bet.
- Stock her freezer with casseroles and soups.
5. Give her a good book:
“Reading gives us some place to go when we have to stay where we are.” – Mason Cooley
6. Send gift cards: food and gas are always needed
7. Care for her fatherless children
- Babysit her kids or come with an activity to share with her and her children
8. Provide help with medical attention, if needed
- Be available if weather isolates – make sure she is okay.
- After the rush of the holidays, it’s easy for loneliness to set in—send a card letting her know you are thinking of her. Hand-written notes may be her greatest friend.
- Invite her to join you at the movies, for dinner, or take her to run errands.
- Dear God, please show the warmth of your love to this precious widow during the winter months. Thank you that you promise to be her covering. May she experience your protection in the storm and provision from the cold. As she faces the year ahead, remind her that your plans are good, you are with her, and you will help her. Amen.
“Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10