The fourth sign of maturity is: A mature person’s decisions are based on character not feelings.
Maturity is a social process that every book I read, every movie I see, every circumstance I encounter, a everyone I meet comes to teach me something about myself. All things work together for good…
John Eldridge, in his book Walking Dead, suggests that when we want to grow in maturity, we find people who make us want to change, to become more than what we envision is our life. We study them. We emulate them. We do not compete them.
The late Senator Katharine Kesolei was one of those women of character, right up there with Eleanor Roosevelt. Dr. S. Kuartei in his Orakidorm honored her, saying, ‘Ng meduch el meteet.’ She knew who she was and didn’t need to flaunt it… but we saw her inner strength shining through. She was never condescending. Never patronizing. She was not afraid to mingle with the commoners or do menial jobs.
My grandfather describes people of character – “Ng diak le melebleb”. A melebleb el chad a silisb ra delul a bokso mal tobed engdi mengkas. “Mosuub ra Katharina e rungalk el diak e le melebleb.” He said that to me in 1979. This tells me that the woman’s inner strength was concrete that even when her positions excelled, possessions and accomplishments collected she remained her true self. My grandfather would have chuckled knowingly had he seen her as Senator.
Mature people—students or adults—live by values. They have principles that guide their decisions. They are able to progress – merely reacting to life’s options, and be proactive as they live their life. Their character is master over their emotions.
Character is who we are and what we believe in, as expressed in our actions and in how we live consistently from day to day. Character is the most enduring form in which our moral energy is channeled. They stand by their principles and values. Even if they stand alone.
Unquestionably, there is something mysterious about each person’s character. Even if we live quietly, without great public achievements, character is the unique manner in which we actualize our values. No one is exactly like anyone else. Mark Lowry says, “I’m thumb-body.” – unique as your thumbprint.
People of great character have three things in common, according to John Bradshaw. I ‘ve been following Bradshaw’s work for over 30 years. You’d think I’d be so together now… LOL. Anyway, here they are:
- Optimistic and undiluted moral energy that does not waver in the face of fear or adversity. They have the virtue of courage.
- Self-discipline energized by willpower. They have the virtue of temperance.
- Commitment to a core set of moral values that govern their style of living. These values are guarded by guilt and moved by the virtue of purpose.
Bradshaw concludes that the core pattern of character people form in their first seven years continues throughout their lives. [/restrict]