A Truly Great Woman
Published: Tuesday, June 5, 2012
As a boy, I became a member of a Methodist Church. The church I attended was very evangelical and full of love. While there, I learned about the Wesleys and the role they played in the founding of our denomination.
The mother of John and Charles Wesley was Susanna. Many call her the Mother of Methodism. More than that, though, she was the mother of nineteen children. (Ten of her children survived to maturity.)
We must never forget, and I'm sure Susanna realized this, that raising children is something that has eternal significance. That is why she determined to spend at least one hour per week alone with each of her children--times when she would read to them, pray with them, and sing to them. John fondly recalled those special moments with his mother.
Here is how one scholar described the Wesley children: ". . .a cluster of bright, vehement, argumentative boys and girls, living by a clean and high code, and on the plainest fare; but drilled to soft tones, to pretty formal courtesies; with learning as an ideal, duty as an atmosphere and fear of God as law."
Children like those are special indeed;, and many of them accomplished a great deal for the Kingdom of God. Susanna's place in history is centered on what her sons, particularly John and Charles, accomplished. However, through them and through the Methodist and Holiness movements her influence lives on, and it always will.
She once said, "I am content to fill a little space if God be glorified." Indeed, He was and is glorified through her ministry.
She went through many hardships throughout her life, including battles with parishioners who opposed her husband's ministry in violent ways, the death of several children, their burning up of their home and all their prize possessions, the death of her husband, and several other disasters.
In spite of these things, her motto always was "strength guided by kindness." This great woman of God passed away on July 23, 1742. Her last words were: "Children, as soon as I am released, sing a psalm of praise to God."
Susanna Wesley--a truly great woman.