I Can’t Sing, So I Have to Tell Stories.

Of course, many of Maelwys’ people had become followers of the Christ – especially since Dafyd’s coming.  But there were some with us who observed the old ways, so to make up for the missed revel, I played the harp and sang.

And it came to me while I was singing – watching the ring of faces around the night’s fire, their eyes glinting like dark sparks, gazing raptly as the song kindled and took light in their souls – it came to me that the way to men’s souls was through their hearts, not simply through their minds.  As much as a man might be convinced in his mind, as long as his heart remained unchanged all persuasion would fail.  The surest way to the heart is through song and story: a single tale of high and noble deeds spoke to men more forcefully than all of blessed Dafyd’s homilies.

I do not know why this should be, but I believe it to be true.  I have seen the humble folk crowd into the chapel in the wood to receive the mass.  In all sincerity they kneel before the holy altar, mute, reverent, as they should be, but also uncomprehending.

Yet I have seen the eyes of their souls awaken when Dafyd reads out, “Listen, in a far country there lived a king who had two sons…”

Perhaps it is how we are made; perhaps words of truth reach us best through the heart, and stories and songs are the language of the heart.’

Merlin, Stephen Lawhead

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