Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A Follow-Up Definition

I figured after my last post, there might be some things it would be appropriate to elaborate on. Mainly, what I consider "a good man." I'll probably stray into my personal preferences in a guy, which will be more specific than your average "good guy." I'll try to make the distinction clear.

Ultimately, I think a "good man" is determined by his heart and his choices. The heart factor is that he wants to be good and do good things; the choices would be that he acts on those desires and does do good things. Together, these form your character. It's going to be almost impossible to always have perfect intentions and perfect deeds 100% of the time, but you can get pretty close as you make it a part of your character (what it all flows from - the third verb - who you are).

There are some more specific things that I think will be hallmarks of a developing "good man." In opposition to the counterexamples I mentioned in my last post, a good man is respectful of himself and others. He knows who he is - a son of God with an inherently divine birthright and duty - and knows that others are also sons and daughters of God with worth. He treats others as he would like to be treated, or better.

A good man seeks after good things. While not all of the "good men" out there are Christians in name, their good thoughts and actions lead them to become more like Jesus Christ. With this, they will strive to improve themselves, and not settle for mediocrity. Other Christlike attributes will develop if they continue this course: patient, loving, persevering, selfless, temperate, service-oriented, humble, confidently optimistic, faithful, eager to learn and progress, and wise and understanding (yes, for those Returned Missionaries, I did think to check Preach My Gospel halfway through the list).

A good man is a work in progress. That means that not all of these attributes will be fully developed, but it also means that he is working on it, and not just letting them slide. Most guys that I've thanked for being such good influences for me are quick to say that they aren't perfect and that they have flaws. This is my acknowledgment again that I know they aren't perfect; we are all human here. But you care, and you're trying, and that's what matters.

Yes, this is a tall order for the kind of "good men" that I want to surround myself with and in time, the man I want to marry. But I know that it is possible to be like that; I've seen it. And I am trying to be that kind of person myself. Sometimes I feel like I'm doing well, and other times I feel my weakness more clearly and wonder if I'll ever be good enough for that kind of guy. Those are the times that I need to be especially patient with myself and remember that my husband will have weaknesses too. If I want to marry an awesome, righteous man, I need to be an equally awesome, righteous woman. And being/becoming is a process (not an event) that I need to be continually working on. I have high standards for myself, and the person I marry will be the same, because that's what I'm looking for.

Hopefully this wraps up any unresolved ends from my last post :)

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