Not a lot is known about Nancy Hanks. Unless you’re really into history, her name probably doesn’t even mean a lot to you. And why would we know a lot about her? She died when she was 34 years old, leaving behind an 11 year old daughter and nine year old son. She hadn’t done anything notable to others in her life. She had simply married and raised two children. But there was however, something special about her. I’m not sure anyone knows what it is, but I’m sure it was her love for her children that made her special.
I wonder if she knew the legacy she was going to leave behind? I doubt she did. I wonder if any of us do? I doubt we do. But legacy is something we should all think about. Not in a way that causes us to live for ourselves, but in a way that causes us to live more fully for others. How much would we love a child if we knew that our love could be the difference in that child becoming President of the United States some day? Maybe we wouldn’t love them more, but I bet we’d spend more time thinking about it. Nancy Hanks was the illegitimate daughter of a poor man. She married a poor man too. She raised her children poor. And I wonder if she held a lot of hope for them.
Whatever Nancy Hanks Lincoln did as a parent, she must have done it well. And to do parenting well you must also love your children well. I believe that she was no exception. Because her son said this of her. “All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.” Again he said, “I owe everything that I am to her.” That’s high praise when you consider her son was Abraham Lincoln. You never know what loving well will accomplish. It’s something that can only be measured in past tense. But just in case we could change the future, I pray we learn to love well.
God Loves You,