Barbara Jordan: Speaking the Truth with Eloquent Thunder

By Max Sherman | Go to book overview

ADDRESS AT THE NATIONAL PRAYER BREAKFAST,
WASHINGTON, D.C., FEBRUARY 2, 1984

Thank you very much, Mr. President, Mrs. Reagan, Vice President Bush and Barbara Bush, and there are so many others. Members and officials and people of high office that I cannot acknowledge any further.

I am delighted to be here to deliver the message for this National Prayer Breakfast. I haven't given my remarks a subject, a title, but I will tell you what I am going to talk about. I am going to talk about the necessity for using, merging the inner life and the outer life, the inner self and the outer self.

When I told my colleagues at the University of Texas that that is what I was going to talk about, they said, “I hope there are no politicians where you're going.”

And I said, “Why do you say that, sir?” He says, “Well, people who are in politics have been stripped of their inner lives. They don't have any, they are empty inside, they are slow, they are plastic.”

I told him he was not telling the truth.

So let us begin. Knowing that here on earth God's work must truly be our own—knowing that here on earth God's work must truly be our own. Now, you will recognize those as the closing words of John Kennedy's inaugural address.

Would we behave as we do behave in word, thought, and deed if we truly believed that we are God's stewards on this earth? Would our policy decisions be the same that they are if we were always consciously aware of our trusteeship role on this earth?

-70-

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