Jefferson Davis

Jefferson Davis

Jefferson Davis

via The Joshua Commission

Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:5

Jefferson Davis’ plantation was named for the tangled wilderness that it was in 1835 when he first moved there. “Brierfield” was about 800 acres, and located south of Vicksburg, Mississippi. 

Brierfield was hostile to development. The land was actually given to Davis by his wealthy brother. Davis was an unyielding man. One of Davis’s fellow West Point alumni later described him as “distinguished in his corps for manly bearing and high-toned and lofty character.” 

Davis married Sarah Knox over her father’s wishes. Her father was his commanding officer at the time. He resigned his commission in the military as a result and was ready to give up his military career. 

Davis moved his new wife to Brierfield during the mosquito and yellow fever season and over the warnings of family and friends. She consequently died of malaria. He nearly died. 

Thereafter, he refused to leave Brierfield. He spent seven years in seclusion: working Brierfield. His only visitors were his brother and neighbor. He gave up nearly a decade of his life! 

A West Point graduate and U.S. Senator, Davis was considered a potential candidate for president in the 1850’s. He was energetic. His family had political connections. He was an accomplished military leader. Pres. Franklin Pierce made him secretary of war in 1853. 

Confederate delegates found him working the unforgiving land at Brierfield when they were sent from Richmond to alert him of his appointment to the Presidency of the newly formed Confederate States. 

Throughout his career, Davis would return to Brierfield. One might say that when he was away, he took Brierfield with him. 

Davis faced many difficult challenges as the first and only president of the Confederacy, and he approached them all as he did Brierfield: unyielding before a congress that squabbled more than the one in Washington, D.C. He ignored the advice of others in dealing with incompetent General Braxton Bragg.  Ironically and over the protests of states’ rights advocates, he attempted to impose the rule of a strong central government as he tried to manage the Confederate government. After the Civil War, Davis refused to take an oath of allegiance to the Union. 

Do you have a Brierfield in your life? A place or situation where others have warned you not to be? A place or situation where you are so sure of yourself and believe that if only you could do or have X,Y, or Z then your Brierfield would be fruitful? Did you drag your family there? 

TODAY’S TRAINING: You need to give that Brierfield to Jesus Christ and listen to the Holy Spirit. God knows better than you. It might be you are called to stay. It might be that you are called to go.