Slow Me Down

Slow Me Down, Lord!

By Wilferd A. Peterson (August 21, 1900 – June 2, 1995)

Slow me down, Lord!
Ease the pounding of my heart
By the quieting of my mind.
Steady my harried pace
With a vision of the eternal reach of time.

Give me,
Amidst the confusions of my day,
The calmness of the everlasting hills.
Break the tensions of my nerves
With the soothing music Of the singing streams
That live in my memory.

Help me to know
The magical power of sleep,
Teach me the art
Of taking minute vacations Of slowing down
To look at a flower;
To chat with an old friend Or make a new one;
To pat a stray dog;
To watch a spider build a web;
To smile at a child;
Or to read a few lines from a good book.

Remind me each day
That the race is not always to the swift;
That there is more to life Than increasing its speed.

Let me look upward
Into the branches of the towering oak
And know that it grew great and strong
Because it grew slowly and well.

Slow me down, Lord,
And inspire me to send my roots deep
Into the soil of life’s enduring values
That I may grow toward the stars
Of my greater destiny.

I have a small plaque of this poem that my husband and children gave me about three decades ago. It hangs in my bathroom next to the sink, a place where I can see it each day if I choose to take the time to look at it. Lately, I have been seeing it a lot, first out of the corner of my eye, then taking it down and reading it carefully and finally, taking the time to read and think about what it is saying to me. This life that we live on earth goes fast. We are only here for a season and then we are gone, leaving footprints behind on the hearts of others. At least, that is our hope. I want to leave a footprint that says that I loved well and that I was well loved. I want to leave memories of activities together and laughter that we shared. I want to enjoy the moments, days, years that I have left on this earth making a difference in the lives of those whom I know best and love best. I can only do that if I slow down and take time to just be.

The world says to rush around and work hard each hour of each day so that you can make more money to buy more things. But Wisdom says to listen, to understand how quickly life passes and how important it is to take the time to be with God, to be with those you love. That is why we need to slow down, so that we can appreciate what we have and be grateful to the Father who gives us all things.

3 thoughts on “Slow Me Down

  1. I love this poem, Vickie. Hope you don’t mind but I copied and sent it to a friend. Blessings to you. We seem to have a western-world issue with striving and becoming human-doings rather than human-beings – we all need to re-learn how to rest.

    Liked by 1 person

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