Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Susanna Wesley

I'd read another book (can't remember now what it was!) by Arnold Dallimore around the time that Eleanor was born and liked it so much that when Toby saw this biography by the same author, he snagged it for me as a Christmas gift. It's very readable, goes quickly and engaging. It was also a real eye-opener after having read the account of the Edwards' marriage.
While Susanna Wesley is known for her diligence and commitment to training her children in godliness, as well as her many children, less is known of her tempestuous marriage to a truly difficult man, the constant debt the family was in, and the fact that it wasn't until she was in her seventies that she finally moved from a works-based salvation to real assurance of Christ's redemption of sin. Interestingly enough, this came about through the preaching of her sons, John and Charles.
This woman did not lead an easy life: there was death, abandonment, poverty and almost endless striving. While there is much to be praised in her character, there is also much to guard against. But as with all of us, God was merciful and gracious, and I am encouraged by the work He can do in any heart, young or old.

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