Thoughts From My Mother-in-Law

1982 OttieMy mother-in-law, Ottie Geneo Rury Brown, was a kind, loving and giving woman whom I dearly loved. Her generous spirit impacted me deeply. I read again this morning the quote and life principle she tried to live by and pass on to her children by word and deed.

It was  a poem written in 1845 by Julia Abigail Fletcher Carney. The first stanza of it was to be published as “A Letter to Sabbath School Children.” On the day it was to be published she had a ten-minute writing exercise and added the second stanza. The poem as a whole she called “Little Things” and it was reprinted in the McGuffey Reader (by which most people of Ottie’s generation learned to read).

Little drops of water,
Little grains of sand,
Make the mighty ocean
And the pleasant land.
So the little moments,
Humble though they be,
Make the mighty ages
Of Eternity.
So the little errors
Lead the soul away
From the paths of virtue
Far in sin to stray.
Little deeds of kindness,
Little words of love,
Help to make earth happy,
Like the Heaven above.

She knew and understood fully that the little choices we make each day ultimately make us what we become – each decision counts. She was a treasure and I was truly blessed to have been a part of her family.

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