SERVICE DONE TO MAN IS SERVICE TO GOD
ABRAHAM LINCOLN became the President of the United States of America in 1861. He was well-known all over the country as a kind-hearted gentleman and as a lover of Truth and Justice.
Even as a child Abraham liked to help and serve people in their need. Once, when he was the President, he went out along with his friends for his daily walk. While returning home, he saw behind him a horse with a saddle but without a rider. Abraham asked his friends if anyone of them knew whose horse it was and why it was moving about in this strange condition. The friends suspected that the horse belonged to a person whom they knew. “He is a drunkard” they said, “and he must have fallen down from the horse’s back somewhere on the road.”
Abraham suggested that they might all go back and search him out. “Why should we?” said the friends, “It is getting dark. Let us hurry along. We are already late. Let the drunkard learn a lesson.” They started moving on. But Abraham did not join them. He turned to go back saying, “Then excuse me. I feel that man needs help. He might have fallen and even been badly injured.” As his friends walked home, Abraham went back along the road looking out for the unfortunate man. After walking some distance he saw the drunken man lying unconscious on the roadside.
Abraham helped him to regain consciousness a little and, with some difficulty, he brought the man to his house. All the people in Abraham’s house were angry with him for bringing in a drunken man. But Abraham did not mind at all their harsh words. He calmly said to them, “Look here, he may be drunk, but he is a human being like ourselves. It is our duty to help him.” Abraham took the drunken man to the bathroom and put him under a cool shower of water for some time. When he regained full consciousness, Abraham served him food. Then, he was allowed to go home.
Abraham believed that service done with love to man was service to God. He was unhappy to see Americans making Negroes work like slaves. He, therefore, fought with his own countrymen to stop this slavery and, at last, won freedom for the Negroes. The Negroes and even many Americans, therefore, used to say, “God in heaven and Abraham Lincoln on earth-we have only these two to look after us.”
- Have you ever helped or done service to a person in trouble? If so, what was the help and what was your experience?
- Why was Lincoln loved so much by his countrymen?
- Do you know of any other great man who was kind and helpful to fellow-beings? If so, write about him.