Lately I have been reading a lot of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, as he is the poet that we are studying in school this year. One of his poems, “A Psalm of Life” has recently caused me to stop and reflect.
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.
Those last two lines “dust thou art, to dust returnest, was not spoken of the soul”. Is that not one of the main reasons that we desire to share Christ, summed up in 12 words? The souls of men are eternal! The choices we make in life matter eternally, and our focus must be just as eternal as it is in living each moment for Christ.
The poem goes on to speak of living for a purpose greater than ourselves, even in the middle of life’s hardships. I would recommend reading it’s entirety, but for the sake of space, I’m only going to put the last verse up. This is where we find ourselves right now.
Let us, then, be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and to wait.
“Learn to labor and to wait.” Work and wait. It’s easy to say, and not so easy to do. We are in the “work and wait” phase of getting to West Africa. We know that God has and will continue to provide, and we know that all we can do is be faithful to follow. One step at a time. Please pray with us, that we will be faithful, that we will follow where Christ leads, and that we will never forget that God has created priceless souls in every person, and He desires a relationship with them.
Additional prayer request: Please be praying for me (Stacy) – I broke my ankle this past weekend, and had to have surgery. I will probably be recovering for 6-8 weeks, during which time, life will be interesting to say the least. Pray for Michael as he takes on a lot of additional responsibility for the family as I am unable to do much more than hobble a very short way from the couch on crutches.
Michael and Stacy Creech says
I’m so glad I was able to help you remember this! It is becoming one of my favorite poems at the moment, and I would like to memorize it as well. I love the hope and purpose that it conveys!
I so appreciate your prayers for the ankle, and I will be praying for you as well. It’s encouraging to hear about what God is doing through others 🙂
Mary Graham says
Mary Graham says
Thank you so much for your good article, Stacy. I have thought so often of the verse: ” :LIFE IS REAL, LIFE IS EARNST, AND THE GRAVE IS NOT ITS’ GOAL. DUST THOU ART, TO DUST RETURNETH, WAS NOT SPOKEN OF THE SOUL.” I had memorized it in elementary or high school, but couldn’t remember who wrote it. . I am so glad you helped to bring this back to my memory. Isn’t the Lord good?
I will be praying for you as you recover from the broken ankle. Please pray for BIBLE TIME MINISTRIES also. The Lord is blessing us in this ministry, and we get Bible Correspondence lessons from many places in the world.
Please pray for laborers to be called and sent to help those who are in need.
I will check NTM’s website to hear from you all. May our Lord continue to bless you.
Love in Christ, Mary Cox Graham John 14:27
P.O> Box 4633
Pensacola, FL 32507