Music (February 29)

Music (February 29)

We may be working our way toward accomplishing some weighty goal, but most of us could still stand to lighten up now and then. There’s no worthwhile destination we can aim toward that isn’t reached better by those who have a song in their hearts.

Honesty (February 28)

Honesty (February 28)

We must first learn to be honest with ourselves — and this requires an admission of our own frailties and foibles. When we’ve learned to face the (sometimes painful) truth about ourselves, we’ll be in a better position to deal honestly with others.

Roots (February 27)

Roots (February 27)

When a person has learned the enduring principles that have proven their value to human beings over many centuries, we say that his or her character is solidly “rooted.” That person will be better able to withstand the difficulties of life.

Serenity (February 26)

Serenity (February 26)

The world is unpeaceful. And if there is nothing more to help us than science and self-improvement, there can be none of the peace we so deeply desire. “All men who live with any degree of serenity live by some assurance of grace” (Reinhold Niebuhr).

Edification (February 25)

Edification (February 25)

The word “edify” comes from a Latin verb meaning “to build.” When one person edifies another, he strengthens the other intellectually, morally, or spiritually. And surely, that’s what we should desire: to build others up rather than tear them down.

Closure (February 24)

Closure (February 24)

We need “initiative” (the ability to get things started) and also “finishiative” (the ability to complete what has been started). Without closure many of our good deeds will be less good. We should finish as much of our work as we can.

Progressiveness (February 23)

Progressiveness (February 23)

The best kind of progress is personal growth, so let’s be progressive in that way and make changes in our own character. Let’s point ourselves forward and strive to do better tomorrow than we did today. Let’s not stand still but rather make progress!

Liberty (February 22)

Liberty (February 22)

Blessings come with duties attached to them, and we must discharge these duties faithfully. Doing so is not a burden; it’s a privilege. So let’s conduct ourselves in such a way that the work of men like George Washington will not have been in vain.

Frugality (February 21)

Frugality (February 21)

Frugality is not opposed to generosity. It is frugality that opens the door to generosity and makes it possible for us to give to other people. If we wastefully spend everything that comes to us, we won’t have anything to give when the need arises.

Ideals (February 20)

Ideals (February 20)

As Harold Nicolson said, “We are all inclined to judge ourselves by our ideals, but others, by their acts.” How much better it would be if, when we’re forming judgments of our friends and loved ones, we took their ideals and aspirations into account.

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