Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Virtue: "Good People"

"Finally, my brethren, whatsoever is true, whatsoever is honest, whatsoever is just, whatsoever is pure, whatsoever is lovely, whatsoever is of good report, if there be any virtue and if there be any praise, think on these things."-  Philippians 4:8


A small word with a big meaning.

Moral excellence... is there even such a thing anymore?

I'd like to think that there is.

The word used in Phil 4:8 is translated from the Greek  arĂȘte, meaning "a virtuous course of thought, feeling, and action" or "moral goodness or excellence."

A virtuous course of thought... much different from what I was practicing yesterday.

As I pondered this verse this morning, I thought of Proverbs 31.  I read a portion of this passage at my Grandma's funeral in January... the part about her children rising up and calling her blessed.

The word translated in Proverbs, from the Hebrew chayil , means "strength, might, efficiency, wealth... an army."  It's the same word used in Ruth 3:11 when Boaz has accepted his role as her kinsman redeemer: " And now, my daughter, fear not; I will do to thee all that thou requirest: for all the city of my people doth know that thou art a virtuous woman."

In today's world, it takes a lot of strength to be a virtuous woman... to think on things of virtue.

To be upstanding and wise, fair, thoughtful, honest, and morally sound.

To be "good people", as we call it in Eastern Kentucky... you know, like, "She's from good people.", implying that someone can be trusted.

Virtue is not lost.  You see it in the person who returns the $100 dollar bill found laying on the ground.  You see it in the person who pays for groceries when the person in front of them comes up a little short.  You see it in kids who struggle to make good grades and refuse to take the easy way out.

Too often we focus on the negative things... and in our world, there is plenty to look at.

But all around  us, there is good.  We just have to look a little harder, and sometimes thing outside of the box. 

And perhaps create our own.

"Be the change that you wish to see in the world."- Gandhi

More on Philippians 4:8 here as I #write31days.



  1. I work to be a virtuous woman. I think a lot of that stems from getting your focus in the right place - if you are trying to follow the Lord He will help you be the good person you want to be. We certainly can't do it in our own strength.

    I like that you give the Greek or Hebrew in these posts...I think it helps to know the translation of certain words to get the meaning,

  2. I love this... Great reminder to focus on the good we see!