Rockin’ & Rulin’: Betsy Moody Part 1 “TRUST” (Mothers Who’ve Shaped the World)

Mothers Who've Shaped the World” ‘Trust in God’ was the brief creed of his mother’s simple Christian faith, and early in life the children learned to love that God and pray to him who is the strength of the fatherless and the widow.”        D.L. Moody~Biography

Betsy Moody was widowed at the age of 35 with seven children and twins on the way.  Her husband, who had been an alcoholic, made no provisions for their sustenance in the case of his death.  The laws at the time prevented the creditors from taking their home, but they took everything else–down to the kindling in the shed, leaving not even a warm fire for the widow and her children.

To say times were hard would be an understatement.  Many neighbors and friends urged her to disperse the children to different families in order that they might be better cared for.  But Mrs. Moody, despite her loss and dire circumstance was resolute, was of hardy stock and lived with one mantra:  “My trust is in God”.

And with that she braved the coming years with grace and wisdom, raising up, among her children, one of the most influential evangelists the world has ever known.

“Mrs. Moody was tender-hearted, and the children early learned the privilege of giving from their scanty store.  The hungry were never turned away from her door, and on one occasion when the provision for the evening meal was very meager it was put to the vote of the little ones whether they should give of their small supply to a poor beggar who appealed for aid.  The children begged that he should be aided, and offered to have their own slices cut thinner.”

D.L. Moody~Biography

Mrs. Moody didn’t have the easy option to prevent children, and though we can’t know, all the testimonies spoken of her indicate that not even her desperate circumstances found her wishing she had fewer, even had the option been available.  What we do see is a woman who accepted children as naturally as they came, and then fell back into the sovereign arms of Him who is over all things, believing He would care for His own.

Trust….do we need to resurrect this basic tenet of the faith we claim?  Do we even give Him opportunity to place in our lives the circumstances He deems necessary to woo and bind our human hearts to His?  Or do we mistake “responsibility” for interference in the heavenly scheme of life?

We see in the Moody family that the very conditions that our human nature repels are often the ones that so deeply carve the beauty in our character.

“His very limitations taught the poor boy [Dwight] of that day the ‘sharpness’ and ‘contrivance’ that grow into what we call executive ability…” D.L. Moody~Biography

I think God neither caused the Moody’s hardship (this hardship came mostly of Mr. Moody’s financial negligence) nor expected the Moodys to alter their lives to coincide with a future about which they knew nothing.  Rather, God is all-sufficient and all-knowing, and provided for their basic needs  just as He promised, rewarding Betsy’s faithfulness, and confounding the wisdom of the world with the “foolishness of God”.

Let me so trust.

*Disclaimer (because if I don’t say it, I’ll be challenged about it ;-))  While I admire D.L. Moody and much of his work, it doesn’t mean I necessarily agree with all his theology and his unique approach to evangelism.

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9 Responses to “Rockin’ & Rulin’: Betsy Moody Part 1 “TRUST” (Mothers Who’ve Shaped the World)”

  1. Karen says:

    Thanks for this… much looking forward to following this series.

  2. Jocelyn says:

    Kelly,
    I have just recently found your website and enjoy your posts so very much.They always seem to be the word of encouragement I need for a particular area I am dealing with in my own life. Thank you for taking the time to post.
    Blessings :0)

  3. Word Warrior says:

    Thank you, Jocelyn…your words are encouraging!

  4. Jamie says:

    Kelly,
    I LOVE this series you are doing. It helps me to be a better wife and mom when I have role models to look up to. Thanks!

  5. MML says:

    Let us be fools for Christ. Let us drink the water turned into wine, see the dead risen and walking, touch restored hands once wilted and diseased… For ye are not come unto the mount that might be touched, and that burned with fire, nor unto blackness, and darkness, and tempest,…But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels,Hebrews 12:18, 22
    What is it that steals our child-like wonder? What is it that removes the richness of the mysteries of God from our hearts leaving us barren and depraved?? Is the house payment, carpool, talk show host more relevant than this great cloud of witnesses? We are children of a living God. Let that status give us courage to be firm and have hearts of peace. Peace in the humility that we do not know His ways, may never understand it all, but without a doubt have been given the Promise:For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end Jer 29:11

    “Let my soul rejoice in Thy mysterious greatness. Let me take refuge in the thought that Thou art utterly beyond me, beyond the sweep of my imagination, beyond the comprehension of my mind, Thy judgements being unsearchable and Thy ways past finding out.”John Baille

  6. Kelly L says:

    Kelly, Awesome Post! Let us live as if we were bought with a price and no longer the beggars on the street outside the palace. Let us live expecting Him to be who He has said, and proven, He is!

    MML, love it!

  7. Candace says:

    We can learn a lot from those who have gone on before us. I enjoy reading of the lives of those who had a trust in God that we tend to not have in our day. It seems like Mrs. Moody knew her God and trusted in Him. We have so much in our day (even when we don’t have as much as our neighbor), and we depend on that rather than God. What would happen if any one of us was placed in the situation Mrs. Moody was in, could we, would we trust in God like she did.
    I have the privilage to stay home and “engineer” my family and home, but if the Lord took my husband today would I be able to stand like she did. Would I trust in the Soveriegn Lord in my time of distress. I hope and pray that the faith He has given me, would stand firm in what ever situation I find myself in. “Trust…” Proverbs 3:5-6.

    I repeat some of the others, Thanks for the blog, I found it and love the fact that you are a like minded wife/mother. Love the fact that you are “fruitful and multiplying” and it sounds as if you are of the reformed persuation in your theology. Thanks for taking the time to share with us your thoughts.

  8. 6 arrows says:

    “…the very conditions that our human nature repels are often the ones that so deeply carve the beauty in our character.”

    What beautiful words! 😉

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