Category: character

  • The power of the law

    “It may be true that the law cannot make man love me, but it can stop him from lynching me, and I think that’s pretty important,” said Martin Luther King Jr.

  • Fear and certitude

    “Extremism is a powerful alliance of fear and certitude,” writes Jon Meacham. “Complexity and humility are its natural foes. “Faith and life are essentially mysterious, for neither God nor nature is easily explained or understood. Crusades are for the weak, literalism for the insecure.” Jon Meacham writes about religion in his book American Gospel—God, the…

  • Unity and religion

    “Can religion be a force of unity, not division, in the nation and in the world?” Jon Meacham asks. “The Founders thought so, and so must we. As a force in the affairs of nations, it must be managed and marshaled for good, for faith will be with us, as the scriptures say, to the…

  • Sound the trumpets

    Dr. James Griffin, president of the medical staff at Parkland Hospital, wants us to sound the trumpets and work to end health care disparities. In an article in The Dallas Morning News, Dr. Griffin says that one of his favorite quotes is from Rev. William Augustus Jones Jr. “Where a trumpet is expected, a flute…

  • Happiness

    Here’s more advice from Ralph Waldo Emerson. “For every minute you are angry, you lose 60 seconds of happiness.” I should have remembered that quote earlier today—when I got frustrated and a little angry. –Joy

  • Helping one another

    When do we help someone else? When it’s easy? When it requires some sacrifice on our part? When it would be easier not to help? In Claire Keegan’s book Small Things Like These, the main character is confronted with a difficult decision.  Should he help if helping might carry negative consequences for him and his…

  • Courage

    In her book Small Things Like These, Claire Keegan calls for us to act with courage. “Was it possible to carry on along through all the years, the decades, through an entire life, without once being brave enough to go against what was there and yet call yourself a Christian, and face yourself in the…

  • Silence

    ”Many’s the man (or woman) lost much just because he (or she) missed a perfect opportunity to say nothing,” says Claire Keegan, author of Small Things Like These.

  • Knowing yourself

    “We can never fully know another person, and we can never fully know ourselves,” says David Brooks, The New York Times columnist. I heard Brooks speak recently at Arts & Letters Live in Dallas. His new book is How to Know a Person—The Art of Seeing Others Deeply and Being Seen Deeply. –Joy

  • A mystery

    “Look at someone not as a problem to be solved, but as a mystery to be solved,” says David Brooks, The New York Times columnist. I heard Brooks speak recently at Arts & Letters Live in Dallas. His new book is How to Know a Person—The Art of Seeing Others Deeply and Being Seen Deeply.