篇一：If You Could Choose
If you could choose what kind of world to live in, what kind of world would you choose? If you could decide what would happen tomorrow, with what kinds of things would you fill it?
If you had the power to decide what types of opportunities would come your way, what opportunities would you select? If you knew that your experiences would match your expectations, what would your expectations be?
In fact, you do have the power to choose your own way. You do have the ability to decide what kinds of events, experiences, opportunities and circumstances come your way.
The world you experience is the world that your dreams, your thoughts, your expectations and your actions most closely resonate*. The world you see and live in is the world you most sincerely expect to see.
The universe is filled with endless possibilities, and those possibilities keep growing with every minute. The way you live determines which of those possibilities will come into your life.
With your thoughts, your actions, your values, your dreams and expectations, you choose what kind of world you live in. The way you live is closely mirrored in the world you see.
Fourscore and seven years ago, our fathers brought forth upon this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Now, we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field as a final resting-place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us, the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us---that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion; that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain; that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom; and that government of the people, by the people, and for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
Youth is not a time of life; it is a state of mind; it is not a matter of rosy cheeks, red lips and supple1) knees; it is a matter of will, a quality of the imagination, a vigor of the emotions; it is the freshness of the deep springs of life.
Youth means a temperamental2) predominance3) of courage over timidity, of the appetite for adventure over the love of ease. This often exists in a man of 60 more than a boy of 20. Nobody grows old merely by a number of years. We grow old by deserting4) our ideals.
Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul. Worry, fear, self-distrust bows the heart and turns the spirit back to dust.
Whether 60 or 16, there is in every human being’s heart the lure of wonders, the unfailing childlike appetite of what’s next and the joy of the game of living. In the center of your heart and my heart there is a wireless station: So long as it receives messages of beauty, hope, cheer, courage and power from men and from the infinite5), so long are you young.
When the aerials are down, and your spirit is covered with snows of cynicism6) and the ice of pessimism, then you are grown old, even at 20; but as long as your aerials are up, to catch waves of optimism, there is hope you may die young at 80.