This Sunday at church, our Pastor put up a slide about character. It said:

“Men of genius are admired; men of wealth are envied; men of power are feared; but only men of character are trusted.”

The dictionary definition states character as moral or ethical quality.

In Romans 5: 3-5, the bible states:

Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.

Now those are words to live by!

It is a standard of excellence and an adherence to values and principals based on the things you actually do in your life. And if followed, it will lead to hope!

Each person has the opportunity to decide how to interpret and implement their character. If you are looking for a quick fix, you are out of luck. Character is developed over time and the testing of your values and principles.

Last week I posted my core values, but posting them is just a word salad — I must live up to those values and standards to earn character from others.

Adhering to my core values is easy when things are going well in my life. It’s when the hard times hit that character is tested. But that is how and when your character develops. It takes effort, time and trials. Tough times build character because they prove to you and to others that you can live your principles when it matters, when it is hard.

So maybe I should change my core values to core character traits. I am going to re-read them and keep myself accountable to them as the weeks go on. I wrote them with honesty and a perception of who I am. Now I will scrutinize them to build my character further.

Everywhere we go,, we see values without principles, principles without action, and a scarcity of character. We need to encourage and support character in our children, our schools, our workplaces, and the public square and hold everyone accountable to their actions, not simply the words they tout as values.

I have held character in high regard and hope and pray I have taught my three sons well.

In between the beauty, life will throw you some real disasters. Your Character (and faith in God) will see you through.