Abraham Lincoln's Faith In Prayer.
When President Lincoln left his home in Springfield, Ill., February 11,
1861, on his way to Washington, he made the following farewell address
to his friends and neighbors: "My friends, no one not in my position can
appreciate the sadness I feel at this parting. To this people I owe all
I am. Here I have lived more than a quarter of a century; here my
children were born, and here one of them lies buried. I know not how
soon I shall see you again. A duty devolves upon me which is perhaps
greater than that which has devolved upon any other man since the days
of Washington. He would never have succeeded except for the aid of
Divine Providence, upon which he at all times relied. I feel that I
cannot succeed without the same Divine aid which sustained him, and on
the same Almighty Being I place my reliance for support; and I hope you,
my friends, will all pray that I may receive that Divine assistance,
without which I cannot succeed, but with which success is certain.
Again, I bid you all an affectionate farewell." That simple but earnest
request sent an electric thrill through every Christian heart, and
without doubt, in response to it, more prayer was offered for him
throughout his administration, than for any one who ever before occupied
the Presidential chair.
At a Sabbath-school convention in Massachusetts, a speaker stated that a
friend of his, during an interview with Mr. Lincoln, asked him if he
loved Jesus. The President buried his face in his handkerchief and wept.
He then said, "When I left home to take this chair of state, I requested
my countrymen to pray for me. I was not then a Christian. When my son
died--the severest trial of my life--I was not a Christian. But when I
went to Gettysburg, and looked upon the graves of our dead heroes who
had fallen in defense, of their country, I then and there consecrated
myself to Christ. _I do love Jesus."_ Rev. Mr. Adams, of Philadelphia,
stated in his Thanksgiving sermon that, having an appointment to meet
the President at 5 o'clock in the morning, he went a quarter of an hour
before the time. While waiting for the hour, he heard a voice in the
next room as if in grave conversation, and asked the servant, "Who is
talking in the next room?" "It is the President, sir." "Is anybody with
him?" "No, sir; he is reading the Bible." "Is that his habit so early in
the morning?" "Yes, sir. He spends every morning, from 4 o'clock to 5,
in reading the Scriptures and praying."
_It was the Lord who Guided the mind of Mr. Lincoln in his extraordinary
act of the Emancipation of the Slaves of America._ The Lord had prepared
it, and chose him as the means whereby to accomplish it.
_Were not his Prayers and efforts specially blessed by the Lord in
wisdom, for the guidance of our Nation_?
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