Ten Cannots

    Think through these “Ten Cannots” by Abraham Lincoln.

You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.
You cannot help small men by tearing down big men.
You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
You cannot lift the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer.
You cannot help the poor man by destroying the rich.
You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than your income.
You cannot further brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred.
You cannot establish security on borrowed money.
You cannot build character and courage by taking away man’s initiative  and  independence.
You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves.

    When Abraham Lincoln was born, his cousin, Dennis Hanks, 9 years old, was visiting.  Nancy let Dennis hold the baby and Abraham just cried and cried.  Dennis handed the crying baby back and he said, “Aunt, take him, he’ll never come to much.”  How wrong could a person be?

    The next best thing to being great is to walk with the great.  This month we celebrate the birthday of one of the giants of greatness. He was born in a one room cabin in Hodgenville, Kentucky on February 12, 1809 and died, as the victim of an assassin’s bullet, on April 15, 1865.  200 years later, this man, Abraham Lincoln influences our lives.  He was the first to establish a Federal Thanksgiving Day. The phrase, “Under God” which Lincoln spoke in his Gettysburg address in November of 1863, has now become an official part of our salute to the flag. “In God We Trust” first used in Lincoln’s administration, still adorns our coinage and is engraved on the wall of both houses of Congress.  We owe a great debt to this man. 

    One of the amazing things about Lincoln was his willingness to grow, to change, to become. In October of 1863, less than 18 months before his death, he wrote: “I have often wished that I was a more devout man than I am.”           We can learn great lessons from this giant in the faith.

2 Responses to “Ten Cannots”

  1. Love this Max. Thanks for sharing. I just linked to this post on a socail media tool called Twitter. Hope it brings you a few extra eyeballs. 🙂

    Praying for Jo, you and your family.

  2. I like that, Max, it makes us think. You, Jo and your family are in my prayers. Love you, Linda

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