Epilogue: Looking at Lincoln

“If I were to try to read, much less answer, all the attacks made on me, this shop might as well be closed for any other business. I do the very best I know how – the very best I can; and I mean to keep doing so until the end. If the end brings me out all right, what’s said against me won’t amount to anything. If the end brings me out wrong, ten angels swearing I was right would make no difference.”

There is no one better to look to for leadership than our 16th President On February 12th we celebrated Abraham Lincoln’s 210th birthday and once agin are reminded of the compelling character of the man and whose leadership saved our country and changed the world for the better and forever.

It was far from easy for Abraham Lincoln at any time, he faced failure after failure both personally and professionally for decades, and met met each one with the resolve to press on to accomplish what he thought was the path he was to travel and to accomplish what he thought he was meant to do. Looking back, if anyone had reason to throw in the towel, it was Lincoln. Here is a quick snapshot at an amazing life:

* At seven years old his family was forced out of their home. He had to work to support them.
* At nine years old his mother died. *At 22 he failed in business.
* At 23 he ran for state legislature and lost, he also lost his job and applied to law school and was rejected.
* At 24 he borrowed some money from a friend to begin a business and by the end of the year he was bankrupt. He spent the next 17 years of his life paying off this debt
* At 27 his party declined to give him the nomination for re-election and they turned him out of office.
*At 27 he had a total nervous breakdown and was in bed for six months.
*At 29 he sought to become speaker of the state legislature – and was defeated.
* At 31 he sought to become elector and was defeated. * At 35 he ran for Congress and once again lost. * At 36 be became a lawyer. studying for years at night alone from a set of law books he bought for less than $2.
* At 37 he ran for Congress and won.
* At 39 he ran for re-election to Congress and lost.
* At 40 he sought the job of land officer in his home state and was rejected.
* At 45 he ran for Senate of the United States and lost.
* At 47 he sought the Vice-Presidential nomination and received less than 100 votes.
* At 48 he ran for U.S. Senate and once again and lost.
* At 51 he was elected President of the United States.
* At 53 he freed the slaves.
* At 56 he preserved the Union of the United States.

In the face of each defeat Lincoln’s resolve lead him to a higher goal and his subsequent victories saved the Union, freed the slaves and set the course for our country that still resonates more than a century and a half later.

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