By Cheri Peacock, Contributor

mother-teresa-life-changing-lessons“We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop.”

Mother Teresa was a woman of intense faith who fervently believed the world could be a better place, drop by drop, person by person. She dedicated her life to succoring and empowering the disenfranchised, and taught us, through her actions, to cultivate and live an attitude of faith.

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Make other people happy

“Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.”

Poverty, taught Mother Teresa, is not exclusive to being hungry or homeless; it includes feeling unwanted, uncared for, and unloved. Much of the world spends a great amount of time concerned with themselves—even Time magazine labeled millennials as the “Me Me Me” generation. Have the faith to care more for other people—to truly look outward.

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Be faithful in small things

“Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.”

Growing up, the phrase “faith can move mountains” was often heard at home and church. While that is motivating, I have discovered that mountains are sometimes moved piece by piece, rather than as a whole. Perhaps my mountain is moved by lifting one shovelful of dirt over and over and over again. Having faith to do the BIG things is important but it’s as necessary to be faithful in small things, those little scoops of dirt. One day, you’ll look and see how far you’ve come and how much stronger you are because of those mounds you’ve been moving.

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Build it anyway

“What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight; build it anyway.”

Looking at my life, I have, more than once, been paralyzed by fear—whether it be with career choices, relationship or other big decisions. The fear that it might not work out. When seeds of doubt enter the mind, a choice must be made—whether to fight the battle or give in to doubt. Mother Teresa teaches a poignant lesson—it might be destroyed in the end, but the lessons you learn building it will not. Build it anyway.

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Go home and love your family

“What can you do to promote world peace? Go home and love your family.”

We aren’t in this journey of life alone. Family members and friends are there to support us, and lift us up. Have faith in them. Don’t rely on your own strength. We need each other.

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Be the leader

“Do not wait for leaders; do it alone, person to person.”

Be courageous and reach out of your comfort zone. Don’t wait for the “right time” or for someone else to take charge. You don’t need someone to tell you they need help; just go forward with faith that you can and will change lives through small means and simple acts of kindness, person to person.

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Faithful is successful

“God had not called me to be successful. He has called me to be faithful.”

Wealth, fame, a big house, designer clothes. To the world, this could seem like evidence of a successful life. But, success doesn’t make you who you are. What do you do when the trial mounts and the road is steep? Be faithful in the highs and lows of life.

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Faith in action

“Faith in action is love—and love in action is service.”

Faith is more than a belief—it’s an action. As we actively develop our faith, we will feel greater love for others. That love leads to service. Take a look at your life. Are you showing love in action?

There are many examples of faithful people throughout history. As we look to them and learn from them, we can live a more fulfilling life.

Cheri Peacock is a graduate of SUU and hiking fanatic. Email her at