by Lisa Hall, International Prayer Coordinator for TWR Women of Hope
Single parents are all around us. Some have lost a spouse due to death, divorce or abandonment, and some have never married. But one thing they have in common is the need for us as Christians to join God in providing loving support for them and their children.
At 17, Sonia* was young, in love and pregnant with twins. After her partner abandoned her, Sonia found herself alone in a strange city crying out to God to let her die. What Sonia did not know was that her mother was fasting and praying for her lost pregnant daughter. As Sonia cried, the babies within her began to move in a way that felt like they were clinging to her for their very lives.
She realized, “‘Who am I to ask God to let me die when I have these two lives inside me?’ I asked God’s forgiveness. And then I experienced the most amazing love I have ever felt. God held me in his arms and rocked me from side to side. Unconditional love. Protection. Holding me and the babies together.”
Sonia’s heart filled with joy as she prayed, “I don’t know what I am going to do and I need your help, God. I want to be a responsible mom.”
The next few years were not easy for Sonia. She returned home and her mother helped out with the babies while she worked to support her new family. Her relatives generously supplied clothing for the babies, and they never lacked food. Although life was a tremendous struggle, Sonia felt God’s faithful presence and learned that he never stops giving, providing and filling.
Sonia recalls, “My grandparents gave me a very old Bible. I embraced the words of God – the book of Isaiah was very influential to me as a single parent. God is there for his children and the one who is alone. I read these verses over and over again with joy in times of sadness or stress.”
Although it has been difficult, Sonia is extremely thankful for her experience of being a single parent. “I wouldn’t be the person that I became if God didn’t allow me to go through that experience. And God isn’t finished yet.”
As believers, how can we support single parents? Sonia shared, “They need people to go and pray with them. Support them with encouragement through your friendship.” And then she added, “Teach single parents that they can do the job. When there is no spouse to help raise a child, God will fill that place. God is there to meet your physical, mental, emotional and spiritual needs and is present with you like a loving Father.”
* Her name has been changed to protect her privacy,