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Friday, 6 March 2009

Learn to Labour and To Wait


A strange thing happened this week that was very lovely! After months of railing and struggling to work things out as I wanted them to be, a major problem happened that I couldn't work out. It was an absolute impossibility but what was strange was that there was an idea that somehow there was a solution. Contrary to the the usual notion of having to find the solution, I stepped out of the way and a miracle happened. How big a lesson is that? Things do work out, if we stop standing in the way of them. Longfellow's wonderful poem, with the line 'Learn to labour and to wait' captures it so perfectly - what a great poet he was!!!

The whole notion that we are little no-marks, pushing against the tide, praying for a happy outcome misses the point completely. We are truly amazing beings and when our 'little selves' get out of the way, miracles really do happen! Patience, I guess, is everything...

Tell me not, in mournful numbers,
"Life is but an empty dream!"
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.

Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal;
"Dust thou art, to dust returnest,"
Was not spoken of the soul.

Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Is our destined end or way;
But to act, that each to-morrow
Find us farther than to-day.

Art is long, and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
Still, like muffled drums, are beating
Funeral marches to the grave.

In the world's broad field of battle,
In the bivouac of Life,
Be not like dumb, driven cattle!
Be a hero in the strife!

Trust no Future, howe'er pleasant!
Let the dead Past bury its dead!
Act, - act in the living Present!
Heart within, and God o'erhead!

Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And, departing, leave behind us
Footprints on the sands of time; -

Footprints, that perhaps another,
Sailing o'er life's solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,
Seeing, shall take heart again.

Let us, then, be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labour and to wait.

2 comments:

Mikaela D'Eigh said...

Christina ~
Thank you so much for sharing this! I really needed to hear it today.

May many blessings come your today!

Christina said...

Thank you for your comment, Mikaela.
I'm glad the lovely poem was helpful to you and hope it raised your spirits :-)