Tuesday, October 16, 2012

11-Year-Old Girl Changes A Face In History

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With the political campaign in full swing and the second of three presidential debates scheduled for tonight, I thought you, as I did, would find this story charming. Politics should always be about substance---right? Well, sometimes style has a little to do with it as well.
Eleven year old Grace Bedell wrote a letter to a presidential candidate about his personal appearance and how he could improve it and improve his chance to win the election.

He responded with a hand written note.

The exchange will make you smile. Even if you are a far left Democrat.

But first a follow-up to yesterday's Blog regarding the expansion of the label "Extreme" when defining Judeo-Christian, biblical values and teaching. And those who advance those beliefs.

Mission:America, a Christian ministry organization has recently published a pamphlet for middle school kids. The pamphlet explains homosexual behavior from an historical and biblical perspective using Q and A.

Human Rights Campaign has responded with a condemning article titled, "Extremist Christian Group Publishes Hateful, Anti-Gay Pamphlet...For Kids."

HRC gives talking points not only to activists, but sympathetic journalists as well.

All parents and people of faith must be aware of this new label of "Extremism" that is being attached to all and everything that does not advance or affirm the homosexual agenda.

Please read both. You decide. Is the pamphlet hateful? Is Mission:America extremist because they hold to a biblical and historical belief?

Now, more about 11-year-old Gracie and her note.

Young Gracie had seen a picture of Lincoln that her father brought home. She decided to tell the Republican candidate that her father is a Lincoln man, as are some of her brothers – and that she believes she can get the rest of them to support him “if you let your whiskers grow.”

This is part of her note and his response:

“I am a little girl only 11 years old, but want you should be President of the United States very much so I hope you wont think me very bold to write to such a great man as you are,” she wrote. “You would look a great deal better for your face is so thin. All the ladies like whiskers and they would tease their husbands to vote for you and then you would be President.”

She also asked if the Lincolns had any daughters, and sent her love to them just in case. She also explained that she’ll understand if the busy candidate does not have time to answer her.

He did have time. This is his response:

Springfield, Ill., Oct. 19, 1860

Miss Grace Bedell

My dear little Miss

Your very agreeable letter of the 15th is received - I regret the necessity of saying I have no daughters - I have three sons - one seventeen, one nine, and one seven years of age. They, with their mother, constitute my whole family. As to the whiskers have never worn any do you not think people would call it a silly affection if I were to begin it now?

Your very sincere well wisher.

A. Lincoln

This is a link to the actual copy of Lincoln's hand written note

Lincoln had made no promises, but by the time he crossed the country by train on his way to Washington for his inauguration, he had, you guessed it, his now-familiar facial hair. His train happened to stop in Grace Bedell's home town of Westfield, N.Y., and when it did, the president-elect called for her by name from the speaking platform.

Out of the crowd came a man, holding a little girl’s hand. A newspaper account of the encounter ran in the Feb. 19 New York World: “Her advice had not been thrown away upon the rugged chieftain," the paper reported. "A beard of several months' growth covers (perhaps adorns) the lower part of his face. The young girl’s peachy cheek must have been tickled with a stiff whisker, for the growth of which she was herself responsible.”

So we know that Lincoln kissed Grace Bedell on her cheek. Years later, she confirmed it while recalling the scene herself:

“He climbed down and sat down with me on the edge of the station platform. ‘Gracie,' he said. ‘Look at my whiskers. I have been growing them for you.' Then he kissed me. I never saw him again.”

Would it be appropriate to say, "Now you know the rest of the story?"

And sometimes little people make a big difference.

Be Vigilant. Be Informed. Be Discerning. Be Prayerful. Be Thoughtful. Be Blessed.