If you’ve ever seen a photo of a mountain or a waterfall—something grand and majestic—you know how important it is to also capture an object in the foreground. By putting an identifiable object in front of a mountain, you provide a visual cue as to the size of what’s behind it. Based on a photo, that mountain could be large or small, near or far. But when an object is set in front, you begin to understand and marvel at its grandeur. Of all the genres of non-fiction, I don’t think there’s any I enjoy as much as a good biography. A good biography is kind of like putting an object in front of a mountain—it reduces the vastness of history by providing a focal point to understand and interpret a distinct period. This is exactly the case with Susie, a new biography of Susannah Spurgeon by Ray Rhodes.
Susannah Spurgeon was, of course, the wife of Charles Spurgeon. Born Susannah Thompson, she had been raised in a Christian context but did not become a believer until she was nearly 21. Shortly after that experience she began to struggle with doubts about her spiritual state and found help through the care of a young pastor named Charles Spurgeon who was newly arrived in the city of London. He first provided her with a copy of The Pilgrim’s Progress and inscribed it, “Miss Thompson, with desires for her progress in the blessed pilgrimage.” Charles’s pastoral concern soon turned to affection, then romance, and the two were married in 1856.
Spurgeons - Life - Highs - Couple - Charles
The Spurgeons settled into a married life that generated some of the highest highs and lowest lows a couple could ever experience. Charles rose to great heights of fame as the Prince of Preachers. Wherever he went he spoke to great crowds and whatever...
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