The Great Wall of China
“The image is what people think we are. Integrity is who we really are.” — John C. Maxwell
During the 3rd century BC. To protect against invaders, a 2,250 km wall was built on the northern border of China. It was seven meters high and five meters thick at the highest point, with watchtowers every hundred meters.
Some have calculated that the cost of building “The Great Wall of China”, if built today, would exceed the cost of building 100,000 kilometers of railroad in the United States.
Despite the protection of the wall, China was invaded several times during successive centuries. The invaders never scaled the walls or attacked the towers.
They entered through the gates after bribing their guardians.
Leonardo da Vinci once said:
“The depth and strength of human character are defined by their moral reserves.”
Leonardo da Vinci
Just as no defense is stronger than the character of its guardians.
Your strength of character is your true defense against the temptations of life.
Many people rely heavily on their reputation and neglect their character. And it is character that really defines who they are.
“The Great Chinese Wall” had a reputation as one of the most effective defense constructions of its time. The builders were proud of the result of their work.
But, they forgot to worry about a very important aspect, such as the character of the guardians who would be in charge of guarding the passage through the wall.
We do not have total control of what our reputation is, because it depends on the opinion of others, but the strength of our character depends exclusively on us.
John Wooden said it well:
“Care more about your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is simply what others think you are.”