“Get correct views of life and learn to see the world in its true light. It will enable you to live pleasantly, to do good, and, when summoned away, to leave without regret.”
Robert E. Lee
I ponder exactly what General Lee included in correct views of life and seeing the world in its true light. He didn't spell it out for us, just suggested we work on it. I wonder what you might consider “correct views,” and how you see the truth of the world. I'll bet your version would be different from mine—but maybe not.
I would have a column headed “do,” and a column headed “don't.” In my don't column, first and foremost would be, “don't hold grudges.” Holding grudges is poisonous for only one person. Grudges held over past events, over someone else's world view, politics, religion, or lifestyle is like having a slow drip of arsenic into your IV fluid. It may not kill you fast, but it will make you sick for a very long time. It's not worth it.
Another would be “don't harbor regrets.” If you've made a mistake, if you've been hateful, if you've wronged somebody, make your amends and let it go. There are no do-overs in life. Sometimes we get second chances, but most of the time we just have to suck it up and say, “I'm sorry. I was an idiot,” and go on. Then it's on them to forgive, or not.
On my “do” list would be “do your best.” You don't have to be a superstar at anything; you don't have to The Best, or Mr. Perfect. Just do your best in every situation, and that will be sufficient. You'll come away with an open heart and a clear conscience. I would also include, whenever possible, “do be kind.” I say whenever possible, because sometimes I just can't pull it off. That's one of my short-comings. Sometimes there may be reason to be unkind, but always try to be unkind in the nicest possible way. That's the Southern woman's anthem, I'm pretty sure. We learn how to be unkind in the nicest possible way at our mother's breast.
When you think about it, the list is not very long as to what constitutes a correct view of life. I think the book of Micah (6:8) said it best: “...do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with your God.” If you do that, you will live pleasantly, and leave this place without regret.
In the Spirit,