November 5


Today's Quotation:

Character is the product of daily, hourly actions, words and thoughts:  daily forgiveness, unselfishness, kindnesses, sympathies, charities, sacrifices for the good of others, struggles against temptation, submissiveness under trial.  It is these, like the blinding colors in a picture, or the blending notes of music, which constitute the person.

John MacDuff

Today's Meditation:

What kinds of actions am I committing and thoughts am I having today that are contributing to my character?  Am I building up the positive, loving, caring parts of myself, or am I allowing the disinterested, thoughtless parts of myself to grow more strongly?  We are who we are, many will argue, but there are many others who argue that we are what we make of ourselves.

Character isn't made in defining moments such as rushing into a burning building to save a baby or sacrificing your life so that somebody else may live.  Character is built over long periods of time, in the little ways, day in and day out.  Character is built in the decisions that we make that at the time may seem trivial and unimportant, but which over time start to add up to something very important.  One brick can't shelter us from the elements, but if you put many bricks together to make walls over the course of time, you find that those seemingly insignificant blocks have come together to be something much bigger than the sum of themselves.

All day, every day, we are creating our character, refining it, honing it, adding new elements to it and getting rid of others.  How great it would be if we could banish fear, jealousy, and envy and strengthen our kindness, compassion, and love.  And every day of our lives we face the little decisions, the little obstacles, that help us to move in that direction.

In what ways are you developing your character today?  What decisions are you making that will add the beautiful notes or the vibrant colors to the wonderful work of art that you are?

Questions to ponder:

1.  Do you consciously consider the ways that you add to your character?

2.  How many opportunities do we have each day to develop different aspects of our character and our personalities?

3.  What kind of work of art do you wish to be?  What do you have to do to make it so?

For further thought:

Material possessions will rust away, wear away, or depreciate, but your inner resources-- character--must never depreciate.  In seeking success you must also seek fulfillment.  Ask yourself not only what you want to be, but who you want to be.

Elizabeth Dole

more thoughts and ideas on character



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