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Category:  Inspirational

Related Links:  | Inspirational | Attitude | Courage | Goals | Happiness | Self-Esteem |

Driving Away the Shadows

By Steve Goodier

When Abraham Lincoln was shot at Ford's Theatre in Washington, D.C. on April 14, 1865, he was carrying two pairs of spectacles and a lens polisher, a pocketknife, a watch fob, a linen handkerchief, and a brown leather wallet containing a five-dollar Confederate note and several newspaper clippings on the Lincoln presidency.

Why did he keep the newspaper clippings? Some of them extol his achievements as president of the United States. In one, Henry Ward Beecher is quoted in a speech as saying, "Abraham Lincoln may be a great deal less testy and wilful (sic) than Andrew Jackson, but in the long race, I do not know that he will be equal to him." The reporter then writes, "The storm of applause that followed this seemed as if it would never cease."

Why would he carry such a clipping? If we know anything about Lincoln, we know that humility was one of his most attractive virtues. I can't imagine that he read from the article during political discussions or entertained dinner guests with its keen insight.

I do not know the answer to these questions. But I am aware that Abraham Lincoln suffered from bouts of serious depression. Could it be that in those "dark nights of the soul," when despair settled over his mind like a cold and heavy snow, that he could reach into his pocket and find hope? Could it be that these words reminded him of what he had dedicated his life to, the good he had tried to do and the lives he had affected?

Francis of Assisi once said, "A single sunbeam is enough to drive away many shadows." We are all collectors of sunbeams. We may have saved away letters and mementoes that warm our hearts and encourage us when we need a lift.

And we can all be radiators of sunbeams, too. A letter, card or note of sincere appreciation can drive away dark shadows like nothing else.

Will you be giver of the light?


Steve Goodier is a professional speaker, consultant and author of numerous books. Visit his site for more information, or to sign up for his FREE newsletter of Life, Love and Laughter at  


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Category:  Inspirational

Related Links:  | Inspirational | Attitude | Courage | Goals | Happiness | Self-Esteem |

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