Progressing in Prosperity
Some say, "It is what it is!". Some ask, "What 'is' is?" So what is the reality of what it is that helps us to prosper and not to ruin things? Consider the following quotes - read and think about them, and consider how things have been, are and might be - if we aim for what is best, what helps us to prosper - in our personal, family, spiritual, political and virtuous living.
"That man whose purpose is his own happiness is bad; he whose purpose is the opinion of others is weak; he whose purpose is the happiness of others is virtuous; he whose purpose is God is great." - Leo Tolstoy (1828 - 1910)
"Opinion is the main thing which does good or harm in the world. It is our false opinions of things that ruin us." - Marcus Aurelius (121-180 AD), Meditations
"Accurate knowledge is the basis of correct opinions; the want of it makes the opinions of most people of little value." - Charles Simmons (1798 - 1856)
"He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsakeeth them shall have mercy." - Proverbs 28:13 (KJV)
"Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness." - George Washington (1732-1799)
"Be true to yourself, help others, make each day your masterpiece, make friendship a fine art, drink deeply from good books - especially the Bible, build a shelter against a rainy day, give thanks for your blessings and pray for guidance every day." - John Wooden (1910 - 2010)
"I believe that any man's life will be filled with constant and unexpected encouragement, if he makes up his mind to do his level best each day, and as nearly as possible reaching the high-water mark of pure and useful living. - Booker T. Washington (1856 - 1913)
"All true zeal for God is a zeal also for love, mercy and goodness." - Robert Ellis Thompson (1844 - 1924)
"Constant kindness can accomplish much. As the sun makes ice melt, kindness causes misunderstanding, mistrust, and hostility to evaporate." - Albert Schweitzer (1875-1965)
Grace - the most characteristic use is to refer to an undeserved favor granted by a superior to an inferior. When used of divine grace toward mankind, it refers to the undeserved favor of God in providing salvation for those deserving condemnation. . . . OT grace means to "be favorable or merciful." . . . The kind turning of either God or humans to persons in an act of assistance in time of need.
"Specially is 'the young man' directed to this book. [How can a young man keep his way pure? By keeping it according to Thy word. . . Psalm 119:9] His undisciplined ardour <1. fire; intense heat, 2. emotional warmth or heat; eagerness, 3. a bright spirit; brilliancy [For zeal for Thy house has consumed me, and the reproaches of those who reproach Thee have fallen on me. - Psalm 69:9]> runs to waste. His mind fluctuates greatly at the mercy of the winds of opinion in the world around him; and greatly does he need some settled master-principles to fix his purpose, choice and conduct. Here then he finds knowledge and discretion; a religion, not of imagination, impulse, or sentiment; but the sound practical energy of Scriptural truth." - Charles Bridges (1794 - 1869)
"So many people would like to have guidance from God because obviously, if you have a word from God, it's the best possible thing. But they don't relate that to life as a whole. Often they want guidance as a way of opting out of the responsibility of making decisions." - Dallas Willard (1935 - 2013)
If you are young, consider what people say about the young and about growing in knowledge and responsibility. If you need guidance consider past leaders and things such as wisdom, purity, virtue and kindness you have been shown by so many people. Kindness, expressed is a gift - you can give as well as receive, as well as experience it with thankfulness for kind people - who help you to grow to be perhaps respected or treasured for your kindness or thoughtfulness.
Thank God for thoughtful and wise people, especially for Jesus who came to save us from our sinful nature.