Daily Riches: Responding to Transcendence with Silence and Stillness (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.” –
 “Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening” –  Robert Frost
.
“Oh, that I had wings like a dove; then I would fly away and rest!
I would fly far away to the quiet of the wilderness.”  Psalm 55:6,7
.
Moving From the Heart to the Head
  • Have you ever experienced something this profound and beautiful in nature? Where? How long ago? Did you seek it out, or did it “just happen” like in this poem?
  • Is it the horse or the driver that “thinks it’s queer” to stop near these dark woods? Is there “some mistake?” How often do you find yourself unable to stop and really experience something special because you have “miles to go before [you] sleep?”
  • As the speaker hurries on to keep his promises, what are we to imagine he is feeling? What is the take-away message of the poem?
  • The horse “gives his harness bells a shake”, and the driver moves on. What does it take to convince you to move on and attend to business when you’re experiencing some kind of transcendence? What does your answer say about you?
“Lord, help me to do one thing at a time today, without rushing or hurrying. Help me to savor the sacred in all I do …empower me to pause today as I move from one activity to the next.” – Peter Scazzero

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For More: Poetry: A Pocket Anthology by R. S. Gwynn

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“Then suddenly it happened, I lost every dime, but I’m richer by far, with a satisfied mind.” (“Satisfied Mind”, lyrics by Red Hayes and Jack Rhodes) Often it’s in our most painful losses that we find what really matters, and the satisfaction found in God alone. I hope that Daily Riches will help you to be “richer by far” as you grow in such satisfaction. Thanks for reading and sharing Daily Riches!  –  Bill (Psalm 90:14)

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