Whitefield Envy

Are you ever tempted to envy others’ gifts or success?? I am.

In 1740, the extremely successful young evangelist George Whitefield contacted Jonathan Edwards about speaking in his church. Edwards, also a young man, already had a reputation as a leading pastor and promoter of revival in his region.

Edwards replied to Whitefield: ?I have a great desire, if it may be the will of God, that such a blessing as attends your person and labors may descend on this town, and may enter mine own house, and that I may receive it in my own soul? I hope this is the dawning of a day of God’s mighty power and glorious grace to the world of mankind.?

Whitefield spoke four times in Edwards? church and stayed in his home. Months later, Edwards wrote a friend: ?I have reason to think that a considerable number of young people, some of them children, have already been savingly brought home to Christ. I hope salvation has come to this house since you [were] in it, with respect to one, if not more, of my children.?

What incredible humility!

Edwards had no Whitefield envy.? Edwards hoped God would use Whitefield in greater ways than him. ?I am often tempted to be envious of others’ gifts and success. Jonathan Edwards cared more about the kingdom of God then guarding his own turf. He would rejoice if God saved his children through Whitefield. And he hoped God would use Whitefield to usher in a great move of the Spirit in his region.

In heaven there will be no envy of others? gifts, rewards or blessings. We?ll rejoice to see God honor others. May God give us grace to follow Edwards? example and rejoice in others’ strengths, successes and blessings now like we will someday in heaven.

Quotes from Strachan and Sweeney, Lover of God

I’m a pastor at Saving Grace Church in Indiana, PA. I’m married to Kristi, have 5 kids, and a growing number of grandkids. I enjoy songwriting, oil painting and coffee, not necessarily in that order.