It’s not so much what you say
As the manner in which you say it;
It’s not so much the language you use
As the tone in which you convey it.
“Come here!” I sharply said,
And the child cowered and wept.
“Come here,” I said – He looked and smiled
And straight to my lap he crept.
Words may be mild and fair
And the tone may pierce like a dart;
Words may be soft as the summer air
But the tone may break my heart.
For words come from the mind
Grow by study and art –
But tone leaps from the inner self
Revealing the state of the heart.
Whether you know it or not,
Whether you mean or care,
Gentleness, kindness, love, and hate,
Envy, anger, are there.
Then, would you quarrels avoid
And peace and love rejoice?
Keep anger not only out of your words –
Keep it out of your voice.
This quote, as well as many other similar ideas, have been occupying my heart and mind lately. I am doing a lot of asking questions of myself, namely, “What is really important? Because all around me I see people chasing after their own dreams and desires while their own marriages and families are left stranded, sitting in a pile of stuff that someone thought was important.
I want to choose my family. Each and every day I want to be faithful to the task of mothering and marriage. God ordained families to represent His love and commitment to the world. I want the choices I make — both the small and the grand —to be a picture of God’s love for us, His children. This won’t just happen. It has to be chosen. Planned. Pursued. It will take far more strength and love and patience than I have. Thankfully, He doesn’t leave us alone.