Developing Good Character in Ourselves
As we saw in a previous post, good character is not BORN in us, but CHISELED into us. Here are few simple thoughts about how to begin to develop good character.
1. Good Character must be Consciously Desired
Through desire a man, having separated himself, seeketh and intermeddleth with all wisdom.(Pro 18:1)
Separate ourselves unto it
We must consciously separate from things (or people) that deter us from growing in godly character. “having separated himself,”
Seek it with all wisdom we can find.
Wisdom (or a derivation of it) is used in 125 verses in the book of Proverbs alone. There is a gold mine of wisdom and character building truths in the Bible. Go mine it!
Stick with it
Be stubborn (intermeddleth means “obstinate”)
Stubbornly refuse to compromise. Grab hold of character and not let it go.
2. Good Character Must be Clearly Discerned
It would be hard to build a house without knowing what one looked like. So we must identify what good character is before we can begin building it in ourselves. The Bible is the best place to start your study on what godly character looks like. Peter gives us a good list to start with.
And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. (2Pe 1:5-7)
Also read biographies of people of great character. Make notes and lists of particular examples where these men and women showed good character. Include specific traits seen in their lives.
3. Good Character Must be Consistently Developed
Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ: (Php 1:6)
Character is developed one decision at a time.
From the list of character traits above, begin a program daily to implement and act on one of these each day. Purposely live that character trait.
Each time we are given a choice of what to do, or not to do, choose character. When given a choice of what to say, or not to say, choose character.
Focus on every decision. Examples:
•We can choose to rise early for a time with God and to get to work on time, or sleep in and dash headlong into the world without God’s power or direction. Choose character.
•We can choose between doing our work to the best of our ability or we can do enough to “get by”. Choose character.
•We can choose to arrive early for church and help others prepare for the service, or we can saunter in late, missing part of the service and disturbing others. Choose character.
All day, every day, every time, all the time…, “choose character!”
Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest. (Ecc 9:10)
Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. (1Co 10:31)
Watch for upcoming posts about helping develop character in our children and others.
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