IMG_0717Qualities such as morality, ethics, honesty, courage, integrity, humility

The final forming of a person’s character lies in their own hands. Anne Frank

No change of circumstances can repair a defect of character. Ralph Waldo Emerson

If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed.  Albert Einstein

To be known as a person of good character is very desirable and is a very high compliment. To be labeled as a person of questionable character is very undesirable. Good character implies admirable qualities and someone who can be counted on and trusted. Questionable character portrays unreliability, dishonesty, and a person who is lacking in responsibility. Our “character qualities” have huge ramifications for our lives.

 We have little use for those of questionable character. Once a person is “labeled” in such a way, they are shunned and avoided except by those of a like nature, other undesirable characters. Not only do we want to avoid their company, we advise friends and loved ones to do the same. As our children grow up and venture into the world we are rightfully very concerned about the nature of individuals they “hang with”. Being around kids lacking in good qualities causes us great concern. “What you see is usually what you usually get”. Bad reputations usually speak for themselves. It is often a bad sign if our kids spend time with “questionable” kids. Human beings are influenced by what they spend their time doing; good or bad. We pick up good or bad habits based on what we do. We are influenced by environment, friends and activities. Someone wanting to employ a shady character for a “questionable” activity goes to the places where these individuals congregate. People of good character avoid going to places where questionable characters normally tend to congregate.

  Good character can emerge from difficult upbringings and bad character can emerge from the best of circumstances. It is not money or material possessions that produce good character. It is such things as good examples and role models, love and nurturing, discipline and accountability. It is also learning responsibility and accountability that provides the foundation for developing good character. It is establishing and keeping values and high standards, living by principles, integrity, morality, and ethics that produce good character.

 A person seeking to become the best person possible is driven increasingly to do a little better each day. The choices and decisions they make will increasingly be guided by their values, standards and principles. Good character is built by making good decisions and right choices. Doing the right thing builds character. Every time we fail to do so we falter and slip. Maintaining good character should be a very highest priority.

Challenge: Take time and stand in front of a mirror. Look deeply within. What are some of your personal issues that may tarnish your character?  If you do not have any; that is wonderful, keep up the good work. If you have issues that prevent you from being the person you know you should be, are you ready to take them on? Raise your standards. Start choosing the high road more than you have been. Do the right things.

Wisdom:  A good character is, in all cases, the fruit of personal exertion. It is not inherited from parents, it is not created by external advantages, it is no necessary appendage of birth, wealth, talents or station; but it is the result of one’s own endeavors.  Joel Hawes

Spiritual: (NIV)

I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.  Philippians 4:13

In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.  Proverbs 3:6

Blessed are they who maintain justice, who constantly do what is right.  Psalm 106:3

As we seek to walk closer with God, we will be given the strength to improve our character. God rewards our efforts. We get out of life what we put into to it. The more we strive to live righteously and be good witnesses and examples, the stronger we become. Our faith grows and in turn gives us even more confidence. Being of good character helps the world become a better place by our example. The world needs more good examples.

Prayer: Grant me the strength and the courage to resist temptation and to make right and good choices.


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