I just finished reading Decision Points by George W. Bush. The memoir of our former president feels as if he is sitting across the table, sipping a cup of coffee and telling you about his life and presidency, especially the first 2/3s of the book. The last 1/3 or so is a bit more "technical" describing the issues facing the war and financial crisis. The last 1/3 didn't keep my attention as well as the first part, but it was still really good! Just required a bit more concentration on my part.
This book really helped me to understand all that went on at 9/11, the financial crisis, and the reasons why we went to war in the Middle East. I was 10 years old on 9/11. I understood that we went to war because of terrorism, but that's really all I understood. By the time I got old enough to really care about the "why" we went to war, we were in the middle of it all. After reading this book, I feel like I have more of an understanding now, which I'm very thankful for!
This book also give me a greater appreciation of the challenges that come with the presidency. President Bush in no way complains about the struggles he faced, but he is honest. His presidency was full of ups and downs. Think about it; eight months into taking office, there was 9/11; Katrina; Afghanistan and Iraq; the economy. Was he a prefect president? Did he always make the right decision? No. But he wanted the best for America and he tried to do what he thought was best. He was highly criticized, yet he persevered.
This also makes me think about our current president. Honestly, I don't agree with a lot of President Obama's policy, but he's still our president. He has responsibility of America weighing on his shoulders. Do we have to agree with him, no, but we can still respect him. We can pray for him.
1 Timothy 2:1-4 says it this way, "I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people-- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior,who wants all people to come to a knowledge of the truth.Honestly, I have not done well at all in this. I disagree with our President, and I haven't given him the respect that is due. I haven't prayed for him like I should. Reading Decision Points opened my eyes a bit more and really made me think about this verse. This is really something I need to work on!
President Bush is also honest about the mistakes of his past, more specifically, those of when he was a young man. When he was younger, he was of the mindset, "I'm going to live life and be a little wild. When I'm 30, then I'll settle down." He regrets the unwise choices of his youth. Some of those decisions even came up when he was running for President, even though the bad decisions happened decades earlier.
In summary, do I agree with every single decision President Bush has made? No. Do I think he was a great President and made a lot of great decisions? Yes! I think this is a must read for any American that is highschool age or older. If you don't like to read, have someone read it to you! When I have kids, I think I'm going to require them to read it in highschool. I really loved this book and plan on buying my own copy and reading it once every few years!
*As a side note: There is some language in this book. When I get my own copy I plan on taking and ink pen to the bad language.