Wednesday, November 19, 2014

From my Commonplace: On Integrity

A much needed 'kick in the pants' this morning from a wise mentor:
"As a matter of fact, it is easier to do the definite work of school or profession than the easily evaded, indefinite work which belongs to the home daughter [or home mother!]"
"We know that an integer is a whole number; and a man of integrity is a whole man, complete and sound.  Like Rome itself, such a man is not built in a day."
"The whole worker goes at his job with a will, does it completely and with pleasure, and has more leisure for his own diversions than the poor 'ca'-canny' creature whose jobs never get done."
"It is well to make up your mind that there is always a next thing to be done, whether in work or play; and that the next thing, be it ever so trifling, is the right thing; not so much for its own sake, perhaps, as because, each time we insist upon ourselves doing the next thing, we gain power in the management of that unruly filly, Inclination.  But to find 'ye the next thynge' is not after all so simple.  It is often a matter of selection."
"What is worth beginning is worth finishing, and what is worth doing is worth doing well."
"It is worthwhile to make ourselves go on with the thing we are doing until it is finished.  Even so, there is temptation to scamp in order to get at the new thing; but let us do each bit of work as perfectly as we know how, remembering that each thing we turn out is a bit of ourselves, and we must leave it whole and complete; for this is Integrity."
"[Integrity] rests upon the foundations of diligence, attention, and perseverance.  In the end, integrity makes for gaiety, because the person who is honest about his work has time to play, and is not secretly vexed by the remembrance of things left undone or ill done."
~ Charlotte Mason, Ourselves, p.167-172
(Interesting addendum:  I read the chapter from which these quotes are taken Tuesday morning in my quiet time, and typed them up Tuesday afternoon with the intention of sharing them here. Then, Tuesday evening, our Bible Study group discussed Colossians 3:18-4:1.  Verses 22-24 particularly jumped out at me in light of these thoughts: "Slaves, in all things obey those who are your masters on earth, not with external service, as those who merely please men, but with sincerity of heart, fearing the Lord.  Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance.  It is the Lord Christ whom you serve."  Okay, Lord, I'm listening....)


  1. The Lord's timing is generally impeccable, isn't it. Wonderful when the thoughts (and wonderfully challenging thoughts they are!) coalesce like this ... Thanks for joining in!

  2. Oh, this is wonderful! I have often considered how *easy* homeschooling was, when I worked as a teenager who was handed a list of schoolwork and housework that needed done by my charges, and I knew that in 8 hours my employer would awaken, come downstairs and inspect everything before driving me home. Yet as a mother I really struggle, because there is no one but me to care if a task is let undone. Self motivation is not my strong suit......

  3. I think I need to print this and pin it up somewhere prominent.