Spiritual Growth and Encouragement for Christian Women

5 Beautiful Lessons We Can Learn from the Life of Barbara Bush

  • Debbie McDaniel
  • 2018 20 Apr
5 Beautiful Lessons We Can Learn from the Life of Barbara Bush

Barbara Bush left this world for her heavenly home just days ago on April 17th, 2018. She is finally reunited with her precious daughter Robin, who died at age 3 from leukemia, and is healed and free in the powerful Presence of our God.

But though she’s no longer with us here, one thing is sure: her incredible influence has been left on this Earth. She made a great mark through her years, and our world is better because of it. The legacy and light of this former First Lady will continue to shine through the people she touched and the values she lived.

A Powerful Legacy

A Powerful Legacy

She was greatly loved, adored, and respected by individuals all around the world. Mrs. Bush had a “realness” to her life that many women, from all walks of life, identified with. What seemed to matter to her most was not her title of First Lady, or all the status and attention that comes with that territory. What mattered to her were people. She was quoted once as saying, “My life can be summed up in a nutshell: Faith, family, and friends.” And that is who she was. Her caring example and powerful legacy will extend on, through many of us, because she taught us how to be caring, strong, and giving, without losing our sense of humor.

She never confessed to being perfect. In fact, she was sure to tell the nation that she wasn’t at the start of her time as First Lady. But her years of life told us a beautiful story, that’s better than a façade of “perfect” ever could be. It was one that had experienced loss and brokenness, it was one that had faced some difficult battles, but it was also one that shined greatly because of it all. For God brought her through and she was stronger because of it. It was a story of her service to so many people, her heart of giving so graciously, and loving courageously.

It was indeed, a life well lived.

5 Beautiful Qualities Exemplified by Barbara Bush:

Image Credit: ©Wikimedia Commons

1. Keep the most important things in life the most important: Faith, Family, Friends.

1. Keep the most important things in life the most important: Faith, Family, Friends.

Mrs. Bush kept her priorities in order, even as First Lady when so many people and things constantly pressed and called for her attention. She knew that her relationship with God was her foundation and strength as woman. And she knew that her family and friends were vital to her life. There was nothing else that drove her attention away from those things. She loved well. She gave time and devotion to raising her 5 children, loving her husband of 73 years, and building a home of love and respect through a lifetime. She was a friend to many and treasured the value of relationships. She was a devoted member of a local church not far from their home.

In a world that’s often filled with such a drive for success, money, and fame, it’s way too easy to get our priorities out of order. Far too many marriages break up, too many kids are left without parents, too many people fall away from God. We can be reminded again today, that God is foundational in our lives, and family and friends are a treasure. Nothing else will last in this world except our relationship with Him in heaven, and the lives that we’ve touched here.

Image Credit: ©Thinkstock

Barbara Bush Quotes about Faith and Life:

Barbara Bush Quotes about Faith and Life:

"I'm a huge believer in a loving God. And I don't have a fear of death for my precious George or for myself because I know that there is a great God."

“At the end of your life, you will never regret not having passed one more test, not winning one more verdict or not closing one more deal. You will regret time not spent with a husband, a friend, a child, or a parent.”

“You may think the president is all-powerful, but he is not. He needs a lot of guidance from the Lord.”

“Family and friends and faith are the most important things in your life and you should be building friendships.”

2. Remember to laugh. A sense of humor is vital in this life.

2. Remember to laugh. A sense of humor is vital in this life.

Maybe one thing that so many people adored about Mrs. Bush is her incredible sense of humor and quick wit. She wasn’t afraid to make a joke and seemed to have an amazing ability to not take herself, or life, too seriously. What an amazing attribute to have in life, and it gives so much laughter and joy to others all around.

Life is hard somedays. It was for her too. And sometimes the dark things and battles we walk through seem to zap our joy and laughter feels far away. But we can remember that joy, laughter, a sense of humor, is often a choice. We can still choose joy even in the toughest days because God says in his word that the joy of the Lord is my strength.” If our relationship with Christ is solid, He will bring laughter to our souls and strength to our days, no matter what we face.

Image Credit: ©Thinkstock

The Wit of Barbara Bush - Quotes that Make Us Smile:

The Wit of Barbara Bush - Quotes that Make Us Smile:

“I have had great medical care and more operations than you would believe. I’m not sure God will recognize me; I have so many new body parts!”

“I married the first man I ever kissed. When I tell this to my children, they just about throw up.”

"Never ask anyone over 70 how they feel. They'll tell you."

"People who worry about their hair all the time, frankly, are boring."

Image Credit: ©Getty

3. Love your family. Stand together. Serve together. Have fun together. Pray together.

3. Love your family. Stand together. Serve together. Have fun together. Pray together.

The Bush family has something in common with most all of ours. They’re not perfect, nor do they confess to be. But they do have this that has helped them through some difficult and stress-filled days. They have love. For God, for one another. They stand together. They have fun together. They work and serve together. They understand the importance of praying together. Mrs. Bush taught us, through her years of motherhood, and her example as a supportive and loving wife, that though some days may not be “easy,” just being together, as a family is incredibly important. She was there, present, strong, for her children as they grew up, and even after as she hit the campaign trail. She was by her husband’s side through 73 years of marriage and they loved each other deeply. She was a devoted grandmother and treasured their moments together.

The enemy of our world loves nothing more than to destroy families and tear apart relationships most dear to us. Sometimes, once we recognize that, we have the power to say “no.” God alone can give us the strength we need to stick together and love well. The power to choose to forgive when we’ve been hurt and to walk through loss and difficult times together. He has an amazing story to tell through all of our families today. May He help us to remember the great treasure He has given us all in one another - our spouse, our children, our grandchildren, and beyond. Family is a beautiful gift, never perfect, but vital. We need each other to be strong in this world.

Image Credit: ©Thinkstock

Quotes from Barbara Bush about Family:

Quotes from Barbara Bush about Family:

“To us, family means putting your arms around each other and being there.”

"You have to love your children unselfishly. That's hard. But it's the only way."

“Your success as a family... our success as a nation... depends not on what happens inside the White House, but on what happens inside your house.”

"The darn trouble with cleaning the house is it gets dirty the next day anyway, so skip a week if you have to. The children are the most important thing."

4. Look for ways to serve and give to other people. Stay involved.

4. Look for ways to serve and give to other people. Stay involved.

Barbara Bush’s life was characterized by her spirit of giving and service. Together, she and her husband have raised more than a billion dollars for charity since leaving public office. But that’s only a piece of it all. She was a present force in many, many lives. Even up until her final months, she was involved in her community of Houston where they have lived for many years. She showed up. She was there, reading to children in classrooms and at events, promoting literacy, which she loved, encouraged, and supported. She visited hospitals and sick children. She supported theatre, she went to baseball and football games. She cared about people. And she just kept giving - her time, her attention, her life.

Maybe sometimes we feel like we don’t have much to give. Things may be tight financially and our time always seems short. But there’s always something we can give. We just have to make the choice. It’s never about the amount, it’s about the heart. It’s easy to lose sight of that sometimes.  But God will show us ways that our service to others and willingness to just show up, is sometimes the greatest gift of all. No one will ever forget an act of kindness that we extend their way. It is the very light and love of Christ offered to a hurting world. It has the power of lasting impact. So often, many around us every day are struggling with huge battles. We just have no idea. Maybe we’re facing them ourselves. May God help us to take our eyes off our own circumstances, no matter how difficult, and remember to give to others.

Image Credit: ©Thinkstock

Barbara Bush Quotes about What Matters in Life:

Barbara Bush Quotes about What Matters in Life:

"Giving frees us from the familiar territory of our own needs by opening our mind to the unexplained worlds occupied by the needs of others."

"Some people give time, some money, some their skills and connections, some literally give their life's blood. But everyone has something to give."

“Never lose sight of the fact that the most important yardstick of your success will be how you treat other people - your family, friends, and coworkers, and even strangers you meet along the way.”

You don't just luck into things as much as you'd like to think you do. You build step by step, whether it's friendships or opportunities.

Image Credit: ©Thinkstock

5. Be real. Be courageous. Believe in something bigger than yourself.

5. Be real. Be courageous. Believe in something bigger than yourself.

It’s no secret that Mrs. Bush was feisty and bold. Her family called her “The Enforcer,” a nickname lovingly given to Mrs. Bush by her son, former President George W. Bush. She was a fighter by nature and those who loved her most have leaned on her strength, wisdom, and wit for many years. But there were many things Barbara Bush walked through in life that could have caused her to stay stuck in defeat and grief. She lost her mother in a tragic car accident and a few years later, lost her precious daughter Robin to leukemia. She suffered through a season of depression and learned the struggles of dyslexia when one her children struggled to read. She lived under the watchful public eye as wife to the President of the US and mom to another. But in all these things, God helped her to overcome. She came through, stronger, more beautiful, more courageous, more real. Her unique trials gave her greater compassion for others who struggled. It paved the way for establishing the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy, which promotes the importance of literacy and supports organizations that teach reading skills to parents and kids.

If we’ve lived long enough, we know one thing to be true. Hard things happen. Life doesn’t always go as planned. In fact, much of the time, it doesn’t. But through all of the twists and turns, the joys and the hardships, God will help to carry us through. He will bring us through the storms of life, and give us the hope we need not only for our own lives, but to be a greater influence and light in the lives of others around us. If you find yourself in hard places today, ask God for help. He is faithful and promises to help us. He’s the only One who can turn the trials around for great blessings.

Image Credit: ©Unsplash

Quotes from Barbara Bush about Building a Lasting Legacy:

Quotes from Barbara Bush about Building a Lasting Legacy:

“Believe in something larger than yourself... get involved in the big ideas of your time.”

“Why be afraid of what people will say? Those who care about you will say, ‘Good luck!’ and those who care only about themselves will never say anything worth listening to anyway.”

"If human beings are perceived as potentials rather than problems, as possessing strengths instead of weaknesses, as unlimited rather that dull and unresponsive, then they thrive and grow to their capabilities."

“And who knows? Somewhere out there in this audience may even be someone who will one day follow my footsteps, and preside over the White House as the president's spouse. I wish him well!”

Our hearts and prayers are with the Bush family during this time. May God fill their lives with incredible peace and comfort in knowing that there are greater days still ahead, for He gives us the gift and hope of heaven.

Thank you, Mrs. Bush, for your service to our nation, your courage, your spirit of giving, and your influence to make things better. Thank you for your love and devotion to people, to your family, and to God. Our world is a better place, because of you.

Debbie McDaniel is a writer, pastor's wife, mom to three amazing kids (and a lot of pets). Join her each morning on Fresh Day Ahead's Facebook page, for daily encouragement in living strong, free, hope-filled lives. Find her also on Twitter and at her blog www.debbiemcdaniel.com

Image Credit: ©Unsplash




Follow Crosswalk.com