President Abraham Lincoln has been in the news a lot lately. In an interview recently, President Bush remarked that he has studied our 16th president much during his own presidency. Our soon to be 44th president, Barack Obama, has also spoken of him frequently. It is no secret that president-elect Obama is a great admirer of Lincoln's. He mentioned him several times during his campaign; he and his family quietly visited the Lincoln Memorial late in the evening last week; he is even being sworn in with his hand resting on the exact Bible that President Lincoln was sworn in on. Fox News (who else?) just had a professor who opined at how similar their individual roads to the White House have been.
Although I have enjoyed the study of history and politics since my youth, I must admit that I have not taken a deep look into Abraham Lincoln's faith until recently. I have seen the pictures of Lincoln with his head bowed and heard the commentary by others about his Christianity and knew that he was a believer in God. However, all of the recent talk has prompted me to research how much of a part God actually played in Lincoln's presidency. My research has been brief and certainly not thorough and there are many views, favorable and unfavorable regarding his presidency, but there are three things that most of the researchers agree upon regarding his faith:
1. He regularly attended church.
2. He daily sought God's help, through prayer, in making decisions regarding our country.
3. He constantly referred to God in his speeches and in his writings.
It was interesting to learn that both our soon to be out going president and our soon to be president both admired Abraham Lincoln. It will be left up to the historians to determine how President Bush's presidency compares to Lincoln's and time will tell how similar Lincoln and President-elect Obama are. I sincerely pray, though, that, out of the many good qualities that Lincoln had, our new leader chooses to follow him in the above three areas. Recent reports about Obama's church attendance are not encouraging. Unfortunately, he seems to be more interested in his exercise regime than going to church. But, it has always been my honor to pray for our elected leaders whether I agree with their politics or not and I will continue to do so. This is certainly a historic time for the United States. For the first time in our history, we will be inaugurating an African American as our president. It is a great day for America. I think Abraham Lincoln would be proud. I sincerely hope, though, that President Obama will see fit to not only follow Lincoln politically, but spiritually as well. If he does, despite political affiliations, President Obama's term in office will be prosperous and great. That is something that we can all pray for.
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