Today is Abraham Lincoln's birthday. His quotes are so collectable. He was an avid reader... reading the Bible many times and many other books. His parents were illiterate, so Abe knew what it was like to be surrounded by those who did not have the advantage of being able to read a sales slip or a deed. He valued a good book.
This quote is one I have always loved:
"Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be."-Abraham Lincoln
His words are true. He knew hard times and sadness in his life. He persisted. He didn't cry "unfair" or that something was too hard.
Abe loved creative solutions to ordinary problems. He led with open ears and humility. He hated slavery, but he wept for the hurt caused by civil war. Brother against brother was excruciating. Women lost all of their men and sons to war. Somehow, the country was able to rebuild. He was known for his honesty, humility... and sometimes a tongue quick with sharp wit. He knew how to make his point, even when it was unpopular.
"Wise words are more valuable than much gold and many rubies." -Proverbs 20:15
Like all humans, Abe was imperfect. Still, there are many stories of his acts of kindness. He stood up for those who could not help themselves. Lincoln may... or may not... have allowed a battered wife, Melissa Goings, to escape during a court recess when he was defending her for the murder of her husband. Women had no voice to raise in those days if they were abused by a spouse.
The judge apparently asked Abe if he had any involvement in her disappearance. His reply was “Your honor, I did not chase her off. She simply asked me where she could get a good drink of water, and I said…Tennessee has mighty fine drinkin’ water.” Legend has it the courtroom erupted in laughter.
Wisdom really is more valuable than rubies and gold... and even more rare.
Today, I am grateful for Abraham Lincoln's wisdom.