A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, the movie about Mister Rogers, is not only doing well because of Tom Hanks being a great actor, or Fred Rogers having been a great guy, but because our country needs to see anybody model some integrity so badly. So many national news stories make us feel ashamed, embarrassed, angry—we keep watching people represent us on the world stage who do not have high moral integrity. Or barely any at all. Mr. Rogers, the soft-spoken man who famously changes shoes and sweaters before he talks to us, is a superhero.
In my own life, I have been blessed to have some morality superheroes, people who exhibited integrity—this month’s theme. People who have integrity not only possess a habit of being honest, but also a stable and high moral character, and they are consistent about it. My friend’s mom, Jean, was like this for me. I could count on her to be honest with me and help push toward the right thing. After I lost my mother, and my dad worked odd hours, it was good to have Jean down the street. I had pretty good common sense but I could always double check with her.
High moral character does not mean unapproachable, or set apart; a person with integrity gets that way by having multiple challenges and learning from them.
How interesting that our first theme in the new year is integrity! How fitting! What a great goal and focus for the year! Who do you think of whose best quality is integrity? Probably somebody you talk to often. Or maybe you are the one that has great integrity, who is always the same person wherever they go—the one who can be counted on to be honest and think of the morality of a situation. That is somebody we want for a neighbor!
In 2020 may you have that guide or even be that guide. When everything else seems chaotic, find goodness consistently and you will be ok. I wish you Happiness and the Best of Health in the New Year!
In peace with love,