A Fervent Faith

When we think of fervent devotion in Jane’s novels, Anne Elliot and Captain Wentworth come to mind. Though they fall “rapidly and deeply in love,” Anne is pressured to break their engagement and Wentworth goes to sea. Years pass, but they never stop loving each other. Captain Wentworth tries to forget Anne but has “never seen a woman since whom he thought her equal” and has only “imagined himself indifferent.”

As for Anne, she regrets giving him up and wishes she had acted differently: “No one had ever come within the Kellynch circle, who could bear a comparison with Frederick Wentworth, as he stood in her memory.” When they finally reunite, they are “more exquisitely happy, perhaps, in their re-union, than when it had been first projected.” Anne and Wentworth do not have a lukewarm kind of affection for one another. Their love has been tested by fire; it is fervent and devoted.

Jane prayed

May we be equally united in Thy Faith & Fear, in fervent devotion towards Thee, & in Thy merciful Protection this night.

Are you “limping between two different opinions” as the Israelites were, or are you following God with “fervent devotion”?


Dodge, Rachel. Praying with Jane: 31 Days through the Prayers of Jane Austen. Baker Publishing Group.

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Rachel Dodge

Rachel Dodge is a Jane Austen scholar and the author of Praying with Jane: 31 Days Through the Prayers of Jane Austen. She teaches college writing and literature classes and gives talks at local book clubs, libraries, and literary groups. Rachel is a regular contributor to Jane Austen’s World blog, Write That Book, Regency World Magazine, and the award-winning Inspire Writers blog. She was the keynote speaker at the Sacramento Public Library’s “How Austentatious!” series, Notable Books series, and 2014 Jane Austen Birthday Tea. Rachel is a graduate of the University of Southern California (B.A. in English and public relations) and California State University, Sacramento (M.A. in English literature). She wrote her Master’s Thesis on etiquette in Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and won the 2005 Dominic J. Bazzanella Literary Award in non-fiction for “Pictures of (Im)perfection: Jane Austen’s ‘Delightful’ Elizabeth Bennet.” She is an active member of Inspire Writers, JASNA, JASNA Greater Sacramento, the L.M. Montgomery Institute, Write that Book, Literary Life, and several Downton Abbey and Jane Austen fan clubs.