Tuesday, February 3, 2009


Two things crossed my path today that have me thinking of stopping to catch the moments in life, to love, to be thankful to God and share this joy with others.

The first is this quote from Phyllis' blog:

“It has been coming to me of late, that our Master’s words about gathering up the fragments that nothing be lost, may touch more than life’s loaves and fishes. I think I must gather some Love-fragments up, and give them to you, or the wind of Forget may blow them away to Oblivion.”
From Sunrise Land, page 74

The second is a poem my English II students read today in class:
"Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening" by Robert Frost

Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.
My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.
He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound's the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.
The woods are lovely, dark and deep.
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

I'm sure this poem inspires many interpretations, but today I paused over the repeated phrase "And miles to go before I sleep." I asked the students why the poet stopped, when he had so far still to go.

Typical answers emerged: to pee, to shake the bells, etc. But one student ventured, to see a beautiful view?

In this long journey of life, the poet wanted to stop and take in a beautiful moment, as strength for the plodding ahead. My "miles to go" may be miles of dirty dishes, miles of laundry, miles of papers to grade, miles of diapers to change. May I stop more often.

I believe these two bits of literature are part of God's answer to my heart cry to Him last night. After a night of harsh words, impatience with my kids, and mostly trying to put them off while I finished other stuff, I begged our Father in Heaven to help me spend the few precious hours I have with them loving them.

Thank you, Father, for helping me to stop this day and see the beauty you have surrounded me with in my family.


  1. Thank you! I needed to be reminded to "stop" more often too. Most people I know dismiss Frost quickly as too simplistic of a poet, but you've helped me find depth in his seemingly simplistic words.

  2. Thanks for the wonderful post. I needed this reminder.

  3. What a wonderful post, and how timely for you.

    When I was in high school, we read a critical essay on Frost's poem that made it about Santa Claus. I loved that.

  4. What a beautiful poem and reminder to just stop sometimes. :)