A Leadership Prayer from President George H. W. Bush

The list of tributes made for President H.W.Bush were outstanding, some of the finest ever made of a U.S. president. He was remembered as “a statesman of unusual restraint and wisdom, a father with enough heart to befriend even his adversaries, a blue blood with a deep sense of duty, a true American patriot.”

Others wrote he was a “great friend and ally of the United Kingdom” (Queen Elizabeth)

  • He lived a “long, successful, and beautiful life.” (President Donald Trump)

  • “I am profoundly grateful for every moment I spent with President Bush and will always hold our friendship as one of my greatest gifts.” (President Bill Clinton)

  • "George H.W. Bush’s life is a testament to the notion that public service is a noble, joyous calling." (President Barak Obama)

  • "It is a lifelong record of selfless patriotic service to our nation," he said. "He led with strength, integrity, compassion and humility — characteristics that define a truly great man."  James Baker, Chief of Staff and Secretary of State

  • He was no cynic. He looked for the good in every person and he usually found it. He was the best father a son or daughter can have.” (President George W. Bush)

One of the finest tributes given to leaders wasn’t made about him, but by him. When he was inaugurated as president, January 20, 1989, he said, “My first act as President is a prayer.” 

“Heavenly Father, write on our hearts these words---use power to help people. For we are given power not to advance our own purposes, nor to make a great show in the world, not a name. There is but one just use of power and it is to serve people. Help us to remember it, Lord. Amen.

President Bush was saying what Dr. John Stott said years ago, “. . . power is safe only in the hands of those who humble themselves to serve.” When leaders use their power to serve:

·       They look for ways to encourage, affirm, motivate, build up others.

·       They have an authentic desire to help others.

·       They lay aside their own priorities to help others fulfill theirs.

·       They’re willing to do menial tasks, kike wash feet.

·       They will see others follow their leadership. 

Yes, Lord. Help us to remember to “use power to serve people.”. President Bush remembered it.