The Most Valuable Virtue

The Most Valuable Virtue

We’re almost to the end of the marathon of scholarship applications with my oldest son and I for one will be extremely glad to be done harping on, er, reminding him to finish the required essay questions. But one essay question had me searching my own heart for the answer: Which virtue is most important in your life right now? Charity, faithfulness, integrity, humility, joy, kindness, patience? I asked him what he thought and his

Beauty Is Only Skin Deep

Beauty Is Only Skin Deep

I spent time looking in the mirror today. Granted, the first bit was while putting in my contacts so I could actually see for the rest of the day. Then, I started on the beauty treatments and make-up designed to minimize my spots and wrinkles while drawing attention to the best parts. I mean, while I happen to like the color of my eyes, please look at them, not the crow’s feet nearby. As a

Character Matters – Wisdom

Get wisdom, get understanding; do not forget my words or turn away from them. Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you. The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding. (Proverbs 4:5-7 NIV) How much better to get wisdom than gold, to get insight rather than silver! (Proverbs 16:16 NIV) The one who gets wisdom loves life; the

Character Matters – Virtue

The three hardest tasks in the world are neither physical feats nor intellectual achievements, but moral acts: to return love for hate, to include the excluded, and to say, “I was wrong.” ~ Sydney J. Harris It’s been almost a year since I started this series on character qualities and it’s been quite a journey of self-examination. From alertness and availability to dependability and diligence. Flexibility and forgiveness to hospitality and humility. Loyalty, orderliness, responsibility,

Character Matters – Truthfulness

“I promise to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help me, God.” As a parent, I’ve had many a day where I felt like the judge and jury sorting through two versions of a story to discover the truth and determine which child was at fault before passing judgment. But it’s not just kids who have can embellish the facts or conveniently leave out details. That brings us to

Character Matters – Tolerance

Our politically correct culture preaches tolerance as accepting everyone or having a fair, objective, and permissive attitude toward those whose opinions, practices, religion, race, nationality, or sexual preferences differ from one’s own. The current media message seems to be tolerate everyone … unless they happen to disagree with you or point out your personal problems. Then tolerance is used as a defensive weapon to say “you have to accept my different lifestyle and don’t dare

Character Matters – Thriftiness

Not too long ago, I heard the description of an individual who could pinch pennies until they squeaked … and squeeze a nickel until the buffalo pooped. Hopefully this week’s character trait doesn’t go quite that far! Thriftiness is letting myself and others spend only what is necessary. Frugality in spending money or resources. Being wisely economical. Without being stingy, thriftiness spends with a prioritized plan in mind. This topic is especially timely given that

Character Matters – Thoroughness

It’s June and school is out. That means it’s garage sale season! Time to scrounge through the house, find stuff to get rid of, dust it off, haul it outside, then sit back and make some money, right? But that’s where this weeks’s character trait comes in. Thoroughness is knowing what factors will diminish the effectiveness of my work or words if neglected. It’s paying careful attention from end to end of the process. It’s

Character Matters – Sincerity

“That’s a lovely dress you’re wearing, Mrs. Cleaver.” And so Eddie Haskell would present his over-mannerly, well-dressed facade on the old TV show Leave It To Beaver. But once the adults were out of the way, this conniving wise guy was up to no good! (I always wondered if and when the Cleaver parents would figure him out and ban him from contact with their boys.) This week’s character trait is the opposite of the

Character Matters – Sensitivity

A light, tender, sensitive touch is worth a ton of brawn. ~ Peter Thompson Perhaps our eyes need to be washed by our tears once in a while, so that we can see life with a clearer view again. ~ Alex Tan. Between the recent Mother’s Day focus and two alternating-being-sick sons, my mothering gene has been in overdrive. Thermometers. Humidifiers. Fluids and boxes of tissue. Antibiotics. Doctor visits. Being able to tell with a single