In his book, After You Believe, Why Christian Character Matters, Dr. N. T. Wright positions the development of Christian character within the context of what it means to be genuinely human and as preparation for the role of “priests and rulers” in the coming “new heaven and earth”.
The book is not an easy read but if you take it on, I think you will be glad you did.
Here is a taste of what Dr. Wright has to say about character.
Human “character” is the pattern of thinking and acting which runs right through someone, so that wherever you cut into them (as it were), you see the same person through and through.
The qualities of character that Jesus and his first followers insist on as the vital signs of healthy Christian life don’t come about automatically.
You have to work at them. You have to think about it, to make conscious choices to allow the Holy Spirit to form your character in ways that, to begin with, seem awkward and “unnatural.”
Only in that way can you become the sort of “character” who will react instantly to sudden challenges with wisdom and good judgment.
When people consistently make choices about their patterns of behavior, physical changes take place within the brain itself.
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