Faith News

A message from St George parish church

A Reflection from June….

A Road Less Travelled A

‘Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the one less travelled by, and that has made all the difference’.

These words come from the last verse of a famous poem, ‘The Road not Taken’, by Robert Frost. The poet describes the experience of standing at a point in the woods where two roads lie ahead and outlines the difficult process he goes through in deciding which one to take. In the end, he chooses the one less worn and downtrodden, but on his journey continually questions whether he should have taken the other one. His initial curiosity eventually won him the day when he recognised that the experiences he had encountered on his chosen route, and the places he had visited, had made all the difference to his life.

In our gospel reading for the third Sunday of Easter, we encounter a different journey, this time along the road to Emmaus. We are told in the passage (Luke 24: 13-35) that, on this occasion, there were two travellers and they were both disciples of Jesus. They talked as they journeyed together, trying to make sense of Jesus’ death and all that happened afterwards. Like the women at the tomb, they were still feeling utterly devastated about the loss of the one they loved so much and, if that was not bad enough, they had received bewildering reports about Jesus being alive. What were they to make of all this? There is no wonder that they were unable to identify the stranger who joined them on the road. We are told that ‘their eyes were kept from recognising him’ (vs.16). Probably, their minds were so preoccupied that they failed to see him. However, Jesus stepped in and met them at their point of need. In the simple, everyday act of breaking bread they recognised him immediately and knew that he had been with them all the time. They asked each other, ‘Were not our hearts burning within us while he was talking to us on the road, while he was opening the scriptures to us?’ (vs 12).

Our lives over the last few weeks have taken us along a route similar to those described above. Like the two disciples, and Robert Frost in his poem, at the present time we are faced with a great deal of uncertainty about the way ahead. The sense of sudden loss of so much of what went before, and the added grief over losing loved ones, understandably dominates the forefront of our minds and the minds of those we know well. We yearn to walk once again along a road that is safer and more familiar. It may be that in our preoccupation with it all, we, like the disciples, are unable to recognise that Jesus is still  beside us, loving us, opening our minds and guiding our thoughts. Joined by the risen Christ, may we consciously take him with us as we continue to journey along this road less travelled.                 June Mackenzie



The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveller, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.