30 Jimmy Carter Quotes On Living Our Highest Values

Our latest collection of Jimmy Carter quotes on living our highest values.

Jimmy Carter was the 39th president of the United States who served as the country’s chief executive from 1977 to 1981.

Before he became president, he had previously served as a Georgia State Senator and as the Governor of Georgia from 1971 to 1975.

Although he served as president during a time of serious problems at home and abroad, Carter set an example as an honest man of high integrity and personal principles.

He has remained active in public life during his post-presidency and demonstrated consistent convictions based on honesty and spirituality.

In 2002, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his work in promoting and expanding human rights.

As Carter moves into the twilight of his life, there are plenty of lessons about peace, justice, fairness, and honesty that we can learn from his words of wisdom.

In that respect, here are some memorable quotes from Jimmy Carter to inspire and motivate you to live your best life.

Also check out these insightful John McCain quotes about character, America and more.

Check out our most popular quote article, a list of short inspirational quotes for daily inspiration. 

If you enjoy this collection, check out our inspirational quotes category page.

Jimmy Carter Quotes On Living Our Highest Values

1. “You can do what you have to do, and sometimes you can do it even better than you think you can.” – Jimmy Carter

2. “We must adjust to changing times and still hold to unchanging principles.” ― Jimmy Carter

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3. “You only have to have two loves in your life: for God, and for the person in front of you at any particular time.” ― Jimmy Carter

4. “Testing oneself is best when done alone.” – Jimmy Carter

5. “To be true to ourselves, we must be true to others.” – Jimmy Carter

jimmy carter quotes on being true to others

6. “I’ll never tell a lie. I’ll never make a misleading statement. I’ll never betray the confidence that any of you had in me. And I’ll never avoid a controversial issue.” – Jimmy Carter

7. “We have a tendency to condemn people who are different from us, to define their sins as paramount and our own sinfulness as being insignificant.” – Jimmy Carter

8. “We have learned that “more” is not necessarily “better,” that even our great nation has its recognized limits, and that we can neither answer all questions nor solve all problems . . . we must simply do our best.” – Jimmy Carter

9. “We can choose to alleviate suffering. We can choose to work together for peace. We can make these changes – and we must. ” – Jimmy Carter

10. “When people are intimidated about having their own opinions, oppression is at hand.” – Jimmy Carter

Jimmy Carter quotes that inspire us to live our best lives

11. “We should live our lives as though Christ was coming this afternoon.” ― Jimmy Carter

12. “America did not invent human rights. In a very real sense… human rights invented America.” ― Jimmy Carter

13. “There should be an honest attempt at the reconciliation of differences before resorting to combat.” – Jimmy Carter

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14. “It’s not necessary to fear the prospect of failure but to be determined not to fail.” – Jimmy Carter

15. “We cannot ignore our gift of the future.” ― Jimmy Carter

jimmy carter quotes on living our highest values

16. “If you fear making anyone mad, then you ultimately probe for the lowest common denominator of human achievement.” ― Jimmy Carter

17. “We will not learn how to live together in peace by killing each other’s children.” – Jimmy Carter

18. “To deal with individual human needs at the everyday level can be noble sometimes.” – Jimmy Carter

19. “I believe that anyone can be successful in life, regardless of natural talent or the environment within which we live.” ― Jimmy Carter

20. “In fact, the final judgment of people I knew was based on their own character and achievements, and not on their race.” ― Jimmy Carter

Also check out these powerful presidential quotes from past presidents.

Other memorable Jimmy Carter Quotes

21. “I have one life and one chance to make it count for something… My faith demands that I do whatever I can, wherever I am, whenever I can, for as long as I can with whatever I have to try to make a difference.” ― Jimmy Carter

22. “Like music and art, love of nature is a common language that can transcend political or social boundaries.”
Jimmy Carter

23. “Our American values are not luxuries, but necessities — not the salt in our bread, but the bread itself.” ― Jimmy Carter

24. “We cannot change the history of the past.” ― Jimmy Carter

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memorable jimmy carter quotes

25. “Whether the borders that divide us are picket fences or national boundaries, we are all neighbors in a global community.” ― Jimmy Carter

26. “I say to you quite frankly that the time for racial discrimination is over.” – Jimmy Carter

27. “Too many of us now tend to worship self-indulgence and consumption.” – Jimmy Carter

28. “Failure is a reality; we all fail at times, and it’s painful when we do. But it’s better to fail while striving for something wonderful, challenging, adventurous, and uncertain, than to say, “I don’t want to try because I may not succeed completely.” ― Jimmy Carter

29. “Wherever life takes us, there are always moments of wonder.” – Jimmy Carter

30. “Spirit is like the wind, in that we can’t see it but can see its effects, which are profound.” ― Jimmy Carter

Which of these Jimmy Carter Quotes was your favorite?

Jimmy Carter will always be admired for his efforts to find peaceful solutions to international conflicts and to advance democracy and human rights.

The world would be a better place if we all embraced his foundational characteristics.

Hopefully, you’ve been inspired by the words of wisdom in these Jimmy Carter quotes.

Did you enjoy these Jimmy Carter quotes?

Which of the quotes resonated with you best.

Tell us in the comment section below.

We would love to hear all about it.

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  1. Sheri

    March 15, 2020 at 3:10 PM

    “America did not invent human rights. In a very real sense…human rights invented America.” ~ Jimmy Carter ***I believe this quote digs deep into the core of why I love being an American. My ancestors came here to be happy and free, to be able to dream, to be themselves. All humans deserve to be treated as valuable and unique individuals no matter our differences…let me rephrase…because of our differences we should celebrate and embrace what makes us so unique. Wouldn’t it be great to live in a country where that happens? Imagine…just imagine a world where everyone is valued, free, and allowed to pursue their happiness and dreams. What a wonderful world that would be! Thank you to Jimmy Carter for spending his life making dreams come true for families…one of the great Americans!

  2. Suzanne Ansari

    January 5, 2019 at 9:21 AM

    “We have a tendency to condemn people who are different from us, to define their sins as paramount and our own sinfulness as being insignificant.” – Jimmy Carter. The most hateful things I have ever heard were from members of my church. Soon after 9/11 many of the congregation’s prayer group exclaimed that ridding the world of Countries like Pakistan was the best way to “keep them from getting into the US”. “Syria and the rest of Middle East should be gone etc.”. Little did most of them know that I am half Syrian-American and am married to a Muslim Pakistani-American. Not one to speak up I stopped going to church for a long time after that. I have finally as I gain wisdom(age) I feel more sure of how to express my values. You see when President Carter ran for his second term I was too shy to be a voice of reason in our school campaign. I only knew my dad was the smartest man I knew and he was voting For Carter. And President Carter had kind eyes and has a “what you see is what you get intelligent tone “ also like my dad.😕 I was shocked he lost.

    “I have one life and one chance to make it count for something… My faith demands that I do whatever I can, wherever I am, whenever I can, for as long as I can with whatever I have to try to make a difference.” ― Jimmy Carter The Carter’s are a beautiful example of being American. that’s all I have. ✌️ and ❤️

    • Jeffrey I. Moore

      January 5, 2019 at 1:04 PM

      Wow, Suzanna, thank you so much for sharing this!

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