The Bible clearly states in the book of James, “Pure and undefiled religion before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world.” “Widow” is very tough title. It conjures up words like alone, withdrawn, sad, and lonely. That’s why we take care of them. In Biblical days, widows were abandoned by their families. They had lost their usefulness, so many of them had to go to the streets. They had difficulties getting food, let alone finding a place to sleep. Thus, the Bible says those are the very people we are to pursue.
Today being a widow is different. Recently, I was with a woman whose husband died about a year ago and she was telling me how difficult it was for her to go to church. She had always been the pastor’s wife and had a spot, but now she’s just alone in a huge church. She was telling me how certain moments at church trigger things and how loneliness makes her want to withdraw. So, she forces herself to go to the women’s Bible study and forces herself to go to church so she has a place to belong.
Our job here at InFaith and for the church in general is to take care of the widows and the orphans, to give them a place of belonging, to crown them with dignity and grace. When I watched tears roll down this woman’s face—who is a vibrant, amazing prayer warrior and woman of God—I recognized that there’s something we need to take seriously and that is our mandate to take care of the widows and the orphans.