“There lies the most perfect ruler of men the world has ever seen.”
I read this in a piece about the greatest human beings which was not talking about Alexander the Great, Moses, nor St. Paul, not even Jesus. It was describing a famous political leader, and it was the American preacher, Chuck Swindol, who was writing. He said about his “perfect ruler of men” (and see how quickly you grasp who he meant) that: when he was 7 years old his family was forced out of their home and he had to go to work to help out by earning some money: at 9, while still a backward, shy little boy, his mother died. He was shattered:at 22, he lost his job as a store clerk and hadn’t the necessary qualifications to go to law school as he wished:at 23, he borrowed heavily to become a partner in a small shop. Three years later his partner died and left him with a huge debt. Next his girl friend died: at 28, after 4 years going steady with a girl he proposed. She turned him down: at 37, on his third attempt, he was elected to the U.S.Congress -two years later he failed to be re-elected, and had a nervous breakdown: at 41, his unhappy marriage was made worse when his 4 year old son died: at 42, he was rejected as a land officer: at 45, he ran for the U.S. Senate and lost. Two years later he was defeated for nomination to the post of Vice President: at 49, he ran for Senate again, and again he failed. He was snubbed, despised, criticised,
misunderstood, subject to ugly rumours – no wonder he had depression:at the age of 51 he was elected President of the United States, and early in his second term as President was brutally assassinated.
As the President lay dying Edwin Stanton, who had once been one of his arch political enemies, said “there lies the most perfect ruler of men the world has ever seen”. A comment too extravagant? Perhaps, but he certainly is the highest regarded of all American Presidents. He was Abraham Lincoln, and who carried with him all the marks of failure, but no American would ever say that Abraham Lincoln was a failure!
“.Humility comes before honour.” Proverbs 18: 12b
From all complaining, self-justifying and self pity, Lord, deliver us we pray.
Now read II Corinthians Chapter 4.