The Woodsman and the Leprechaun

Long ago, a woodsman saved the life of a leprechaun and was given one wish. The woodsman thought for a long time and finally wished that each of his three daughters find a good husband.

But the leprechaun was full of games. “How am I to know what’s good in your mind? I’ll give them husbands, but you can name only one quality and it’s got to be the same for all. What’ll you have? I can make them clever, strong, beautiful, rich – you name it.”

The woodsman said, “Then give me men of good character.”

The leprechaun wasn’t done playing. “And how am I to know what good character is?”

“Do you have children?” asked the woodsman.

“I do,” said the leprechaun.

“And do you love them?”

“More than life itself.”

“Then give my girls the kind of men you want for your children.”

“Ah,” the leprechaun said, “then you shall have honorable men with kind and loving hearts. And I’ll throw in a strong conscience too.”

The woodsman was a shrewd man and a good father. He knew the well-being and happiness of his children depends on the quality of their relationships. The quality of their relationships depends on the quality of the people they are with.

But what if the woodsman was asked what one quality he wants in his own daughters? As a wise father he would again ask for good character. Whether it’s in one’s spouse or oneself, cleverness, good looks, and money are nice, but in the end the most essential quality of a good life is good character.

This is Michael Josephson reminding you that character counts.

Michael Josephson
www.charactercounts.org

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