Forgive us for splitting “worthwhile” into two words, but that was the style in the time of Anna Robertson Brown. Ms. Brown published her book “What is Worth While?” in the early 1900s.
Here is an excerpt:
What is Worth While?
Anna Robertson Brown
Only one life to live! We all want to make the most of it. How can we accomplish the most with the energies and powers at our command? What is worth while?
We cannot possibly grasp the whole of life. What is vital? What may we profitably let go? We may let go all things which we cannot carry into eternal life. Eternity is not for shams.
Worry is spiritual nearsightedness, a fumbling way of looking at little things, and of magnifying their value. Make a heroic life out of whatever is set before us. In the eternal life, there is no greed. One hears of neither mine nor thine. All things are for all.
What are the things in life that we should keep, guard, use?
Be wise in the use of time. The question of life is not, How much time have we? The question is, What shall we do with it? Is the work vital, strengthening my own character, or inspiring others, or helping the world?
If you are not happy today, you will never be happy! Strive to be patient, unselfish, purposeful, strong, eager and work mightily! If you do these things with a grateful heart, you will be happy – at least as happy as it is given man to be on earth.
True love never nags; it trusts. Love does not have to be tethered, either in time or eternity.
There is the great danger of substituting intellectual ambition for ordinary human affections. Let us keep it in bounds; let us see to it that it holds a just proportion in our lives. It takes a great soul to be a true friend. One must forgive much, forget much, forbear much.
Disappointment, in life, is inevitable. Pain is the common lot. Sorrow is not given to us alone that we may mourn. It is given us that, having felt, suffered, wept, we may be able to understand, love, bless.
Strong, serene, unquenchable faith in the loving kindness of God will enable us to look fearlessly toward the end of the temporal existence and the beginning of the eternal, and will make it possible for us to live our lives effectively, grandly.