My fascination with Abigail Adams began in college. I was a history major, with a love for the time period of the American Revolution and a heavy interest in women’s history. I wanted to know how women lived out their lives in various phases of history—what they thought, how they acted, how the “big” events affected their daily lives. So I picked Abigail Adams as the subject of my senior history thesis.
Abigail Adams was one of those amazing women who left us great insight through her vast correspondence. She wrote not only her husband and other family members, but she also wrote to other amazing, thinking women, such as Mercy Otis Warren.
I spent one whole summer devouring Abigail’s letters. I’d already read several biographies and understood the basics of her life, but the woman herself came alive to me through her own words. And I began to notice something: some of her words seemed familiar. Very familiar. After many instances of deja vu and much searching, I discovered that Abigail often quoted scripture in her letters, sans book, chapter and verse. The words just flowed from her pen without such preambles as “you know, the Bible says . . .”
It struck me then that scripture was so ingrained in her thought processes that it found its way naturally into her conversation. Wow. I remember thinking I want to be like that, to have scripture spout into natural conversation—without effort, without a smug pride. Just the natural bent of my thoughts.
In those letters I met a strong, godly woman. A woman who didn’t complain (much) of her fate of raising her children mostly alone. A woman who loved her husband in spite of his single-minded devotion to his country. And, apparently, a woman who hid the Word of God in her heart. Who wouldn’t want to identify with such a woman? Who couldn’t find something to learn from her?
So today I give you Abigail Adams. A preacher’s daughter. A patriot’s wife. A president’s mother. And a woman who, from ages past, teaches us that the Lord will strengthen our hands for the tasks He calls us to do.