I have been reading the works of D.L. Moody for the last few months. Dwight Lyman Moody Was an American evangelist and publisher during the mid-1800’s. Moody once said, “If God is your partner, make your plans BIG!”
Isn’t that fantastic?
All of us have a calling on our lives. All of us have a purpose for which we’ve been put on this earth. If God is your partner in this life, then your calling, your plans, and your purpose are grand, and He is right beside you guiding you along the path of life.
There have been men and women throughout history who have made their plans BIG. They have changed histories course by following and obeying the call of God on their lives. These men and women have paved the way for us.
Across the centuries, there have been Christian Women whom God has called to carry His word throughout their sphere of influence. Although many believe that women have no voice in the pulpits of Christianity; these women prove that God chooses both men and women to preach and teach His name. Look at Deborah, Esther, and Miriam. These women were carriers of the Gospel. They used their voices and their gifts to save nations and minister the word of God.
For each of the women mentioned in this post, there are hundreds more that could have been listed here. These ten women have personally influenced my life through their work, writings, teachings, and example; and through their obedience to God’s calling on their lives, they have changed the world.
I am so happy you here to join us for PART 1 of a five-part blog series entitled "Ten Christian Women Who Changed the World".
1. Mary Magdalene.
Mary Magdalene was from the thriving town of Magdala, and although we don’t know anything about her family, the fact that she could freely follow Jesus shows that she most likely didn’t have family obligations.
Mary Magdalene was one of Jesus’ followers. It is essential that you understand that this Mary was not the woman of Luke 7:37 who broke the alabaster box at Jesus’ feet. There is also absolutely no evidence that she was a prostitute or that she was a woman of a foul reputation.
Luke 8:2 tells us that, Mary Magdalene had been healed from seven demons. She was a tortured woman, but that does not equate to having a bad reputation. Jesus saw her, freed her from bondage, and she willingly followed Him. You can read more of her biography HERE.
Take a moment and read John 20:10-18. Mary is weeping at the tomb when she turns and sees her Messiah; alive and well. He speaks to her and gives her a great commission, “Jesus said to her, “Do not cling to Me, for I have not yet ascended to My Father; but go to My brethren and say to them, ‘I am ascending to My Father and your Father, and to My God and your God.’ (John 20:17)
Mary was the first person commissioned to go and preach the Gospel of the risen Lord. What if she kept this beautiful moment to herself? What if she didn’t go and tell the brethren?
I am thankful that Mary accepted God’s call on her life and became a forerunner for the Gospel. She gave up whatever Magdala held for her and followed Him. She sat at His feet and heard His teachings. She sat at His crucifixion and cried with His mother. And she was at His tomb when He became known to her as the Risen Lord.
Mary Magdalene was the first follower of Jesus to obey the call to preach the Gospel. She did so, and along with the disciples of Jesus, changed the world.
2. SUSANNA WESLEY
She was born January 20, 1669. The 25th of 25 children, Susanna Wesley, was a woman of infinite strength. She never preached a sermon. She never published a book. She never founded a church, and yet, her life and legacy still speak.
Susanna Wesley married Samuel Wesley in 1688, and together they had nineteen children. Among her children were John and Charles Wesley who stand among the leaders of the Christian faith.
Susanna experienced many hardships in her life. Her husband was jailed due to poor financial decisions. He left her for a period leaving her with the children. Their home was burned down twice, and yet, Susanna continued to teach her children the ways of the Lord.
Susanna was the primary source of education for her children. She taught each of them. She once wrote to her husband, "I am not a man nor a minister, yet as a mother and a mistress I felt I ought to do more than I had yet done. I resolved to begin with my own children; in which I observe the following method: I take such a proportion of time as I can spare every night to discourse with each child apart." (SOURCE)
It is no question that her sons Charles and John learned about their Heavenly Father through their earthly mother.
As I said earlier, Susanna never did any of those things that one would associate with greatness. She was a mother and housewife, and that was her greatest legacy. Because of her tutelage, she raised two sons who grew up to become pillars of the Christian Faith.
It was her son John who said, "I saw that giving even all my life to God (supposing it possible to do this and go no further) would profit me nothing unless I gave my heart, yea, all my heart, to Him." I am sure he learned this at his mother's knee.
Preacher Andy Stanley said, "Your greatest contribution to the kingdom of God may not be something you do but someone you raise."
This was most certainly true for Susanna Wesley whose children became the father's of the Methodist faith. Her legacy lies in her children, and because of their influence on the world, her voice still speaks.
I pray that through this series, you will find ordinary women who answered an extraordinary call. I pray that you will also see yourself in these women. All of them have accepted God's plan and purpose for their lives and as a result; changed the world.
Your name could be next for the generations ahead of you to learn from.
YOUR TURN: Who is a woman, famous or not, that has influenced your life and changed your world? Let's chat in the comments below!