For as long as I can remember I have been a fan of an influential man whom I knew I would never meet since he died 95 years before I was born. Abraham Lincoln has always fascinated me. I often reflect on his incredible intelligence, powerful perspective, and wonderfully witty words.
Few today know that when Lincoln was young, he rejected his father’s God, primarily because his dad was such a difficult man. The future president even penned a scathing essay about God. Members of his campaign staff worried it might be discovered and destroy his chance at the presidency.
Soon after Lincoln won the election, the weight of the oval office began to settle heavily on his shoulders. He had known the country was deeply polarized, and soon became even more aware of the nearly impossible task of leading the bitterly divided nation.
Despite his brilliance and incredible people skills, Lincoln was mindful he could not solve the country’s problems without help. Bill Crowder’s March 27, 2022, Our Daily Bread devotional got me thinking about this when he wrote, “Lincoln is viewed as a wise leader and a man of high moral character, but another element to his makeup, perhaps, was the foundation for everything else. He understood that he was inadequate for the task at hand. His response to that inadequacy? Lincoln said, ‘I have been driven many times upon my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere else to go. My own wisdom and that of all about me seemed insufficient for that day.’”
Though none of us have or ever will have the formidable responsibilities of the president, all of us have had moments when, despite our best efforts, we have to come to grips with our limitations and lack of answers. Life presents moments when we, like Lincoln, need to turn to a power greater than ourselves for the help we desperately need.
Coming to terms with our need for God’s help did not begin with Lincoln. The Apostle Peter challenged believers to realize God wanted to help them 2,000 years ago when he penned these encouraging words to Jesus’ early followers, “Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” (1 Peter 5:7, NLT).
When you and I feel overwhelmed and are not sure of our next step, we need to remember Peter’s encouraging words and give all our worries and cares to our God, who is eager to help us. As we do, like Peter and Lincoln, we too can experience God’s reassurance that he cares for us no matter how overwhelming our current situation may seem.
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