Character


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Character over Reputation

 

 

Political and church leaders, actors and actresses, singers, writers, athletes, professors, engineers, doctors, lawyers and practically everyone (although they may not be even aware of what it truly means) are undoubtedly concerned about their REPUTATION.

 

Even if we give high regards to integrity and dignity as values taught everywhere in the world, we have been continuously startled by news of moral downfalls. We’ve all heard of government officials being persecuted, famous professional athletes linked to drug usage, popular actors involved in crimes, businessmen proven to have committed unethical practices, and preachers not measuring up to what is expected from them. Sadly, the list seems endless.

 

More than ever, there is a necessity for us to instill in ourselves not just good reputation, but more importantly, good character. Most of us are so concerned about our image - on how others may look at us. Let me make this clear though. I am not saying there is something wrong in assuring that we maintain a good image. A learned person knows better not to give more importance to reputation than his character. There is a big distinction between the two.

William Hersey Davis has this to tell us:

 

The circumstances amid which you live determine your reputation...

The truth you believe determines your character...

Reputation is what you are supposed to be...

Character is what you are...

Reputation is the photograph;

Character is the face...

Your reputation is made in a moment;

Your character is built in a lifetime...

Your reputation is learned in an hour;

Your character does not come to light for a year...

Reputation grows like a mushroom;

Character lasts like eternity...

Reputation makes you rich or makes you poor;

Character makes you happy or makes you miserable...

Reputation is what men say about you on your tombstone;

Character is what the angels say about you...

 

We must be able to master ourselves by knowing both our internal and external characteristics. Some people cannot see beyond the appearance, but the few who can see the importance of inner beauty are more sensible.

 

Let us rear an honest heart. It calls for conquering our weaknesses, fears, faults and other undesirable traits. Let us wage a war against our own faults because once we know what we are fighting against, then that will lead us to take the necessary steps in order to overcome such imperfections.

 

What particular aspects must be given more attention to develop an ideal attitude? The answer is good deeds, because they endure. They are therefore more important than mere kind words and praises that may pass away like a wind that blows and constantly moves. By developing a good character, you also win for yourself a good reputation.