During the last half of the nineteenth century women were given greater leadership roles in some Protestant churches. This was true of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
Three of the first eleven treasurers of the General Conference (1871-1883) were women. Of the nineteen editors of The Youth’s Instructor who served between 1852 and 1899, eleven were women. L. Flora Plummer headed the Sabbath school department of the General Conference for 23 years. The Adventist Church during 1878-1910 licensed 31 women to preach.
Ellen White often pointed out that “The Lord has a work for women, as well as for men…. They can come close to the hearts of those whom men cannot reach.” (The Review and Herald, August 26, 1902.)
Significant portions of Ellen White’s counsel to women in the work of God have been brought together in this volume. Included also are chapters on self-respect and on balance in all aspects of life. Most of the counsel in these chapters, though originally directed to men, is equally applicable to women. In today’s high-pressure society many women are wage earners, often single mothers trying to provide for their families. The content of these chapters will go far toward restoring and sustaining a sense of self-respect, helping women to know that they are important and valued in God’s sight.
A few of the statements in this book must be understood in the light of their cultural, social, and time context. “Regarding the testimonies, nothing is ignored; nothing is cast aside; but time and place must be considered” (1SM, 57). To assist the reader, we have endeavored to provide enough context for a complete understanding. We also have given the date and source of publication, or the original date of writing when publication was after Ellen White’s death. In a few cases, when the original publication is not readily available, we have given a more recent source, along with the date of writing. Side headings throughout the book have been supplied by the compilers.
Daughters of God is designed to be an encouragement, inspiration, and affirmation to women around the world. It includes counsels that lead women to strive for the highest ideals in whatever walk of life they find themselves, be it personal or professional. Every woman is of inestimable value in the sight of our heavenly father. He created woman to stand by the side of man, equal in value before God, and associated with him in the work he was given to do. The Father gave his only begotten Son to die for the entire human race, individually and collectively, male and female.
It is our hope that church members around the world will gain new insights and blessings from reading this volume. God needs the talents of all his people to help finish his work on earth.