Character Carved In Stone — Book Review

From the compassion of Ulysses S. Grant to the heroism of Peter Wang ROTC (Granted posthumous admission to the West Point class of 2015. You’ll have to read the book to find out why.) I was held spellbound and captive as I read of the attributes and accomplishments of some of our country’s greatest heroes.

Between the covers of Character Carved in Stone by Pat Williams, you will find stories of West Point graduates whose lives personified the virtues of that institution.  The author then continues with ways to incorporate those some concepts into your own life.

 

These are my favorite quotes from each of the 12 Virtues:

“Leaders with authentic compassion are strong, courageous, honest, and direct.” p35

“Faith replaces fear with courage.” p51

“Live each day dedicated to the future.” p66

Determination means making up your mind that you will achieve your goal…expecting roadblocks and obstacles, but prepared to find a way over, around, or straight through them.” p77

Dignity is a priceless virtue–a virtue that is in danger of extinction in our society.” p92

“Success is the result of discipline, of repeatedly doing the things that lead to excellence.” p104

“A person of integrity is whole and complete–not divided or compartmentalized. A person of integrity will be the same person in public and in private. The inner reality will match the outward reputation.” p123

“Always stand up for your people. Always have their backs. If they are attacked or criticized, defend them… That is what loyalty demands of you.” p137

“Pray for the power to persevere. Never give in. Never give up. Never quit.” p153

“We don’t blame other people. We don’t blame circumstances. We don’t blame God. We accept full responsibility.” p167

“Throughout our nation’s history, generations of Americans have enjoyed freedom and prosperity because American soldiers have selflessly served their country.” p180

“When we trust one another, we can accomplish great things. Without trust, we are defeated before we begin.” p199

Who should read and use Character Carved in Stone? Everyone! Parents, preachers, politicians (especially), grandparents, teachers, teenagers, students, farmers, waiters… Everyone!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell/Baker Publishing Group. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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5-Sentence Friday 1 Corinthians 16:13

I decided to take the Strong, Brave, Loved 21-day Challenge with Holly Garth.  Today’s verse and devotional were both powerful and convicting for me.  Through many of my life experiences, it has been necessary to have strength and bravery as part of my arsenal.  Things like surviving a tornado that landed on the patio of our first home, surviving a t-bone crash, standing up for those who have been wronged, and many more of the uncertainties in this life, have required my dependence on the strength and courage that is given by God.

  1. Choose your battles carefully.  You don’t have to fight every one.
  2. Know that the evil one is always trying to get through your guard.
  3. Know God’s Word and use it to determine what He expects of you.
  4. Stand and persevere when you know it’s right.
  5. True strength is knowing where your power really lies.

I’ve discovered that sometimes we lose the battle, or it appears that way.  If we know it’s the right thing to do we should be doing it.  God is always the final judge.  Wouldn’t you rather hear why did you than why didn’t you?

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

STAYING FOCUSED

David and Goliath, a colour lithograph by Osma...

David and Goliath, a colour lithograph by Osmar Schindler (c. 1888) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Then Saul said to David, “You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him; for you are but a youth while he has been a warrior from his youth.”

But David said to Saul, “Your servant was tending his father’s sheep.  When a lion or a bear came and took a lamb from the flock, I went out after him and attacked him, and rescued it from his mouth; and when he rose up against me, I seized him by his beard and struck him and killed him.

“Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, since he has taunted the armies of the living God.”

And David said, “The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.”

Thus David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone, and he struck the Philistine and killed him; but there was no sword in David’s hand.

I SAMUEL 17:33-37, 50 (NASB), HOLY BIBLE

Take a close look at this story.  David was so sure of his faith in God that he could disobey King Saul’s order not to go against the Philistine.  David had life experiences with lions and bears and had known God’s protection.  David’s courage came directly from God Himself because He knew his heart.  David knew God and knew God’s will in this situation would be done.

Basically, David never took his eyes off God during the battle.  There was a problem (later in his life) only when he chose to see through eyes that were selfish and sinful.   Faith is keeping our eyes on God, and staying open and aware of His desires, even when we don’t think He’s looking.  He’s always looking…He never Blinks. 

Heavenly Father give me faith and courage like David’s.  Let me keep my eyes on You at all times.  Make it so, Lord!