I recently finished reading Killing Kennedy, an interesting take on the JFK assassination from Bill O’Reilly. I knew some of the indiscretions of Kennedy through reading history but getting a more full picture through the book was eye-opening. It also educated me about the indiscretions of some other well-known leaders of his time.
Here is a brief history of some of the most well-known people in the world.
- John F. Kennedy was a serial adulterer
- So was Martin Luther King, even with prostitutes
- Nelson Mandela was involved in terrorism early in life
- George Washington owned slaves
- Benjamin Franklin slept his way across America and Europe
- Margaret Thatcher had an incredible short temper
- John Lennon all but abandoned his son Julien when he married to Yoko Ono
- Elvis Presley was a drug addict
- Oprah Winfrey is known to be a diva that expects royal treatment
- Ronald Reagan was a lousy actor divorced early in life
The list goes on and on and you’ll be surprised to learn some of these things from some of the most admired people in recent history.
One of my favorite authors and historians David McCullough shares a brilliant piece about how we should view our leaders but more importantly, how we should see ourselves.
“Now those who wrote the Declaration of Independence in Philadelphia that fateful summer of 1776 were not superhuman by any means. Every single one had his flaws, his failings, his weaknesses. Some of them ardently disliked others of them. Every one of them did things in his life he regretted. But the fact that they could rise to the occasion as they did, these imperfect human beings, and do what they did is also, of course, a testimony to their humanity. We are not just known by our failings, by our weaknesses, by our sins. We are known by being capable of rising to the occasion and exhibiting not just a sense of direction, but strength.”
Ephesians 1:7 sums it up.
“In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace.”
Thank God for grace and recognition that he sees the potential in all of us and wants us to do good and succeed in his eyes. God sees us as perfect, even in our imperfections and it makes his grace shine brighter than ever.