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In the eighteenth century God used men such as John and Charles Wesley, George Whitefield and Jonathan Edwards to bring spiritual revival to both Britain and America – but what about the women in their lives? What was it like to live and work with such dynamic and demanding men?
While looking through the lens of history, Clare Heath–Whyte draws out lessons for today, via the honest portraits of these seven unique women.
From godliness to bitterness, hostility to courage, the lives of these extraordinary women point us to a faithful God, even in the midst of the most difficult of life’s scenarios.
The women of the 18th century revival have often been overlooked. This book gives sketches of the famous (e.g. Selina Countess of Huntingdon) and the little known (Sally and Molly Wesley, wives of Charles and John respectively). Husbands can read this to see helpful and unhelpful ways to relate to their wives, and many of the lessons to applicable to all Christians, not just wives. It is also part of the human back story of the revival.
I loved this book! The stories are varied and fascinating. It has an engaging style so that you could give it to a younger teenager, but at the same time it deals with profound issues with compassion and insight. I appreciated the applications to our own lives and especially the study questions with each chapter, which are based around a bible passage rather than just the chapter itself. This makes it a really useful tool for small groups or one to one partnerships. I wanted to give it to everyone for Christmas and found myself planning where I could use it in church life.
In this fabulous book, Clare Heath–Whyte brings to life seven women from a very different culture, who would normally seem so distant to us. They struggled with lots of the same things we do today including persecution for their faith, jealousy and difficult marriages and any woman could certainly see aspects of her own failings in their equally flawed characters. They also endured far worse things than many of us could ever imagine in the 21st century – horrible, deadly diseases, outliving their own children and travelling in treacherous conditions across the world with missionary husbands. But they continually strived to live godly lives, committed to their families – lives that glorified our faithful God. This is a great read with gripping historical background, the fascinating `other side’ of some well–known stories and thought–provoking Bible–based reflections between each woman’s tale. Not just for `wives’ – it is a perfect resource for one–to ones, study groups or even for personal reading, suitable for any woman over the age of 18. This book will both challenge and encourage you, teaching some valuable lessons along the way. As ordinary Christian women today, we should live extraordinary lives, being thankful for what we have and faithful to a God that will never leave us.
A very good book we use it for a small group study session and it works well, equally good for an individual read.
Wesley, Whitefield, Edwards, Newton – familiar names from the 18th century spiritual revivals in Britain and America. However, Clare Heath–Whyte’s book isn’t about the famous men, about whom so much has already been written. Instead, she offers insights into the women who made their ministries fruitful, and perhaps even possible! From Susanna Wesley’s formidable spirituality in motherhood to the Wesley brothers, through to Selina, Countess of Huntingdon’s use of her worldly assets for the gospel, these women were remarkable, and yet also sinful. This book doesn’t try to hide their failings, but rather uses them to offer the reader something to learn from.
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