Soul Food for Friday: Living or Life?

The Soul Food quote to chew on this week is often attributed to master orator, Winston Churchill  but has no specific record of him ever writing or saying it. Still this quote ranks as one of my all time favorites and seems Churchillesque. I first read this quote in the book, The On-Purpose Person by Kevin W. McCarthy and later picked up a desk paperweight from Successories that features it as a quote on integrity.

Enjoy digesting this great soul food quote, “We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we live.”

Part of the power of this quote for me is this quote describes my understanding of my purpose in life, it defines who I am as a steward of all that God has given. I am motivated to see that life is more than what we do, but who we are and even more who God is making us to be.

This Soul Food quote calls out the best for what I give and even more how I live.

My wife, beautiful Sharon, sent me an e-mail years ago that helped me appreciate the power of this quote even more. The essay over the years has been wrongly attributed to a student who survived the Columbine massacre, one of those great internet twists of truth. Actually, it was written in 1995 by Dr. Bob Moorehead who wrote, “The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings, but shorter tempers; wider freeways, but narrower viewpoints; we spend more, but have less; we buy more, but enjoy it less.

We have bigger houses and smaller families; more conveniences, but less time; we have more egrees, but less sense; more knowledge but less judgment; more experts, but more problems; more medicine, but less wellness. We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values. We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often.  We’ve learned how to make a living, but not a life; we’ve  added years to life, not life to years. We’ve been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet the new neighbor.

We’ve conquered outer space, but not inner space; we’ve cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul; we’ve split the atom, but not our prejudice. We have higher incomes, but lower morals; we’ve become long on quantity, but short on quality. These are the times of tall men, and short character; steep       profits, and shallow relationships. These are the times of world peace, but domestic warfare; more leisure, but less fun; more kinds of food, but less nutrition.

These are days of two incomes, but more divorce; of fancier houses, but broken homes. It is a time when there is much in the show window and nothing in the stockroom; a time when technology can bring this letter to you, and a time when you can choose either to make a difference … or just hit delete.”

Make a life, not just living is not meant to be a catchy slogan, but a philosophy of life. It guides my life as it sits on my desk and even more rests in my heart. What quote is driving you today to make a life and not just a living?


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Filed under Leadership Quotes

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