“Friendship is precious, not only in the shade, but in the sunshine of life, and thanks to a benevolent arrangement the greater part of life is sunshine.” —Thomas Jefferson
“Friendship is a single soul dwelling in two bodies.” —Aristotle
“Friendship is not a way of accomplishing something but a way of being with another in which we become more authentically ourselves.” —Eugene Peterson
“The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand, not the kindly smile, nor the joy of companionship; it is the spiritual inspiration that comes to one when you discover that someone else believes in you and is willing to trust you with a friendship.” —Emerson
“If the first law of friendship is that it has to be cultivated, the second law is to be indulgent when the first has been neglected.” —Voltaire
“Friendship is agreement with kindliness and affection about things human and divine.” —Cicero
“The light of friendship is seen plainest when all around is dark.” —Grace Noll Crowell
“For spiritual friendship, which is what we mean by true friendship, should be desired not with a view to any worldly good, nor for any reason extrinsic to itself, but from the worthiness of its own nature, and the feeling of the human heart, so that it offers no advantage or reward other than itself. … For in this true friendship one makes progress by bettering oneself, and one bears fruit by experiencing the enjoyment of this increasing degree of perfection. And so spiritual friendship is born among good people through the similarity of their characters, goals, and habits in life.” —Aelred of Rievaulx
“The quickest way to initiate friendship is to give people freedom to be themselves.” —Andy Braner
A few quotes that capture the essence of America’s greatness.
“The citizens of the United States of America have a right to applaud themselves for having given to mankind examples of an enlarged and liberal policy, a policy worthy of imitation. All possess alike liberty of conscience and immunities of citizenship. It is now no more that toleration is spoken of as if it was by the indulgence of one class of people that another enjoyed the exercise of their inherent natural rights. For, happily, the government of the United States, which gives to bigotry no sanction, to persecution no assistance, requires only that they who live under its protection should demean themselves as good citizens in giving it on all occasions their effectual support.” —George Washington, in a letter to a Jewish congregation
“I always consider the settlement of America with reverence and wonder, as the opening of a grand scene and design in Providence for the illumination of the ignorant, and the emancipation of the slavish part of mankind all over the earth.” —John Adams
“We’ve staked the whole future of American civilization, not upon the power of government. Far from it. We have staked the future upon the capacity of each and every one of us to govern ourselves, to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God.” —James Madison
“We go forward with complete confidence in the eventual triumph of freedom. Not because history runs on the wheels of inevitability; it is human choices that move events. Not because we consider ourselves a chosen nation; God moves and chooses as He wills. We have confidence because freedom is the permanent hope of mankind, the hunger in dark places, the longing of the soul. When our Founders declared a new order of the ages; when soldiers died in wave upon wave for a union based on liberty; when citizens marched in peaceful outrage under the banner ‘Freedom Now’—they were acting on an ancient hope that is meant to be fulfilled. History has an ebb and flow of justice, but history also has a visible direction, set by liberty and the Author of Liberty.” —George W. Bush
“To live under the American Constitution is the greatest political privilege that was ever accorded to the human race.” —Calvin Coolidge
“Nowhere in the world is presented a government of so much liberty and equality. To the humblest and poorest amongst us are extended the highest privileges and positions. The present moment finds me at the White House, yet there is as good a chance for your children as there was for my father’s.” —Abraham Lincoln
“America was not built on fear. America was built on courage, on imagination and an unbeatable determination to do the job at hand.” ―Harry Truman
“America is another word for Opportunity. Our whole history appears like a last effort of the Divine Providence in behalf of the human race.” —Ralph Waldo Emerson
“As soon as I make sure everyone else is out.” —Rick Rescorla, World Trade Center security chief for Morgan Stanley, on September 11, 2001, responding to a colleague who told him he must get out of World Trade Center Tower 2. Rescorla led the evacuation of nearly 2700 Morgan Stanley employees. He died when Tower 2 collapsed.
“I believe that every right implies a responsibility; every opportunity, an obligation; every possession, a duty.” —John D. Rockefeller Jr.
“We must be the great arsenal of democracy.” —Franklin Delano Roosevelt
“Let each citizen remember at the moment he is offering his vote that he is not making a present or a compliment to please an individual—or at least that he ought not so to do; but that he is executing one of the most solemn trusts in human society for which he is accountable to God and his country.” —Samuel Adams
“Some things have not changed at all since 1776. For one thing, freedom is still expensive. It still costs money. It still costs blood. It still calls for courage and endurance, not only in soldiers, but in every man and woman who is free and who is determined to remain free.” —Harry Truman, on the 175th Anniversary of the Declaration of Independence
“The preservation of the sacred fire of liberty, and the destiny of the republican model of government, are justly considered as deeply, perhaps as finally staked, on the experiment entrusted to the hands of the American people.” —George Washington
“The thing they forget is that liberty and freedom and democracy are so very precious that you do not fight to win them once and then stop. Liberty and freedom and democracy are prizes awarded only to those peoples who fight to win them and then keep fighting eternally to hold them.” —Sergeant Alvin C. York, in reply to those who asked, “What did war get you?”
“To dare is to lose one’s footing momentarily. Not to dare is to lose oneself.” —Soren Kierkegaard
“If you aren’t in over your head, how do you know how tall you are?” —T.S. Eliot
“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently…. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.” —Steve Jobs
“One of the best places to start to turn your life around is by doing whatever appears on your mental ‘I should’ list.” —Jim Rohn
“You must get involved to have an impact. No one is impressed with the won-lost record of a referee.” —Napoleon Hill
“Most people don’t aim too high and miss. They aim too low and hit.” —Bob Moawad
“Anybody can do their best. God helps us do better than our best.” —Catherine Bramwell-Booth
“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it makes some difference that you have lived and lived well.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Our souls are not hungry for fame, comfort, wealth, or power. Those rewards create almost as many problems as they solve. Our souls are hungry for meaning, for the sense that we have figured out how to live so that our lives matter, so that the world will be at least a little bit different for our having passed through it.” —Rabbi Harold Kushner
“People who matter most are aware that everyone else does, too.” —Malcolm Forbes
“Selfishness is the greatest challenge for a coach. Most players are more concerned with making themselves better than the team.” —John Wooden
“There is a direct relationship between your own level of self-esteem and the health of your personality. The more you like and respect yourself, the more you like and respect other people. The more you consider yourself to be a valuable and worthwhile person, the more you consider others to be valuable and worthwhile as well. The more you accept yourself just as you are, the more you accept others just as they are.” —Brian Tracy
“One of the greatest diseases is to be nobody to anybody.” —Mother Teresa
“Choose the way of life. Choose the way of love. Choose the way of caring. Choose the way of hope. Choose the way of belief in tomorrow. Choose the way of trusting. Choose the way of goodness. It’s up to you.” —Leo Buscaglia
“We’re concerned with how things turn out; God seems more concerned with how we turn out.” —Philip Yancey
“Most hockey players follow the puck on the ice. I never skate to where the puck is. I skate to where it is going.” —Wayne Gretzky
John Maxwell is extremely well-read! It is obviously that he uses many sources to sharpen and refine the teaching principles he shares in his books. I recently finished reading 15 Invaluable Laws Of Growth, and as usual, Dr. Maxwell shared several quotes from others which I found very highlighter-worthy. Here are a few of them…
“What great accomplishments we’d have in the world if everybody had done what they intended to do.” —Frank Clark
“A mistake is simply another way of doing things.” —Warren Bennis
“You cannot change your destination overnight, but you can change your direction overnight.” —Jim Rohn
“Can there be a more insidious word? Later, as in ‘I’ll do it later.’ Or, ‘Later, I’ll have time to write that book that’s been on my mind for the past five years.’ Or, ‘I know I need to straighten out my finances… I’ll do it later.’ ‘Later’ is one of those dream-killers, one of the countless obstacles we put up to derail our chances of success. The diet that starts ‘tomorrow,’ the job hunt that happens ‘eventually,’ the pursuit of the life dream that begins ‘someday’ combine with other self-imposed roadblocks and lock us on autopilot.’ —Jennifer Reed
“No one can produce great things who is not thoroughly sincere in dealing with himself.” —James Russell Lowell
“Probably the most honest self-made man ever was the one we heard say: ‘I got to the top the hard way—fighting my own laziness and ignorance every step of the way.’ —James Thom
“It’s impossible to consistently behave in a manner inconsistent with how we see ourselves. We can do very few things in a positive way if we feel negative about ourselves.” —Zig Ziglar
“Follow effective action with quiet reflection. From the quiet reflection will come even more effective action.” —Peter Drucker
“The wise man questions himself, the fool others.” —Henri Arnold
“The successful person has the habit of doing the things that failures don’t like to do. The successful person doesn’t like doing them either, but his dislike is subordinated to the strength of his purpose.” —E. M. Gray
“Where many people go wrong in trying to reach their goals is in constantly looking for the big hit, the homerun, the magic answer that suddenly transforms their dreams into reality. The problem is that the big hit never comes without a great deal of little hits first. Success in most things comes not from some gigantic stroke of fate, but from simple, incremental progress.” —Andrew Wood
“A bad habit never goes away by itself. It’s always an undo-it-your self project.” —Abigail Van Buren
“The great composer does not set to work because he is inspired, but becomes inspired because he is working. Beethoven, Wagner, Mozart, and Bach all settled down, day after day, to the job at hand. They didn’t waste time waiting for inspiration.” —Ernest Newman
“Do not wait for a change of environment before you act. Cause a change of environment through action. You can act upon your present environment so as to cause yourself to be transferred to a better environment.” —Wallace D. Wattles
“Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong. There are always difficulties arising which tempt you to believe that your critics are right. To map out a plan of action and follow it to the end requires some of the same courage which a soldier needs. Peace has its victories, but it takes brave men to win them.” —Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Someone’s opinion of you does not have to become your reality.” —Les Brown
“If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they may have planned for you? Not much.” —Jim Rohn
“An idealist believes the short run doesn’t count. A cynic believes the long run doesn’t matter. A realist believes that what is done or left undone in the short run determines the long run.” —Sydney J. Harris
“Every problem introduces a person to himself.” —John McDonnell
“Experience isn’t really the best teacher but it sure does serve as the best excuse for not trying to do the same silly thing again.” —Frank Hughes
“You will never stub your toe standing still. The faster you go, the more chance there is of stubbing your toe, but the more chance you have of getting somewhere.” —Charles F. Kettering
“Not everything that is faced can be changed. But nothing can be changed until it is faced.” —James Baldwin
“No pain, no palm; no thorns, no throne; no gall, no glory; no cross, no crown.” —William Penn
You can read my book review of 15 Invaluable Laws Of Growth and its companion book JumpStart Your Growth by clicking here.
To read quotes from John Maxwell in 15 Invaluable Laws, click here.
P.S. And watch for more quotes coming soon!
If this is true, then I’ve got some questions to ask myself:
Two more thinking quotes for today:
Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. —Philippians 4:8
As I was packing some sliced apples in school lunches I was contemplating the cliché about comparing apples-to-apples. We use this cliché when things are similar, or at least in the same category. If things are dissimilar or in different categories we might say we’re comparing apples-to-oranges.
If your life was in the “apple” category, to what other “apple” would you compare? Interesting question!
You are a unique individual. God has not made—ever—anyone like you, nor will He ever—in all of the future—make another “apple” like you. You are a one-of-a-kind, completely distinct from the 7 billion human beings on Earth right now. No one who has ever lived or ever will live is an “apple” like you.
So comparing yourself to anyone else is always an apples-to-oranges comparison.
Again I ask you to consider: to what other “apple” would you compare?
I believe the only other apple to which you can honestly and realistically compare yourself is: YOU! You can only compare yourself to the God-given potential in you. You are your own apple-to-apple comparison because no one else is in your category. God doesn’t expect you to be an Albert Einstein or a Winston Churchill or a Madam Curie—He just expects you to be you. To be the best you He created you to be.
Earnestly desire and zealously cultivate the greatest and best gifts and graces (1 Corinthians 12:31 AMP).
When you expect nothing less than your very best from yourself, you will help bring out the very best in others too. If your apples-to-apples comparison is just a you-to-you comparison, it relieves the pressure from others to compare their apple to your orange.
Look for the best in each other, and always do your best to bring it out (1 Thessalonians 5:15, The Message).
Check out these great quotes about doing your personal-apple-best—
Do your personal-apple-best today, and stop comparing yourself to another’s orange. When you can do this you will find it easier to encourage others to do their personal-apple-best too.
If you haven’t read any poetry lately, I encourage you to give it a try. It sounds/reads differently, but the rhythm and pace sort of sings to your mind and heart as you read it. For Americans I recommend starting out with some American poets like Emerson or Henry Wadsworth Longfellow; for you Brits, try some Robert Browning.