Stay the Course
(for Ruth)
Stay the course the Savior laid.
Trust in Him; live unafraid.
Other’s lights may all have dimmed.
Guard your lamp and keep it trimmed.
Drink life’s water at its source.
Timeless laws are yet in force.
Other choices bring remorse.
Stay the course.

Take your time; you must not go
faster than your soul can grow.
Keep a steady prayerful pace,
like your Savior, grace by grace.
Pumps flow freely after prime.
You’ll need time to make life rhyme.
Step by step, you’ll upward climb.
Take your time.

There are seasons in each life,
times of calm and times of strife,
when to listen, when to talk;
do not run before you walk.
Order in all that you yearn
gives you power to discern.
Take each challenge, each concern,
in its turn.

Follow Christ; be not deceived.
Keep the faith that you received
when your heart was fresh and pure.
You knew then; be now as sure.
Shun the choices fools endorse.
Undue haste will bring remorse.
Keep your cart behind the horse.
Stay the course.

Poet‘s comments about “Stay the Course”

Youth, by definition, is impulsive and impatient. Many of life’s lessons can only be learned over time. “You’ll understand when you’re older” is often older people’s only answer to some questions asked them by the young. Now that I am one of those older people, I find myself often saying it and other similar inadequate responses. When our words fall short, it’s important that the examples of our lives do not. The young person who has sufficient faith to stay the course set for her or him by loving parents and church leaders who strive to be good examples of that course has my respect and admiration. Alma counseled his son Helaman saying, “learn wisdom in thy youth; yea, learn in thy youth to keep the commandments of God,” and then he listed several things that Helaman could consistently do including sincere morning and evening prayer, and living a life centered in the truths of the gospel: “Yea cry unto God for all thy support; yea let all they doings be unto the Lord, and whitersoever thou goest let it be in the Lord; yea, let all thy thoughts be directed unto the Lord; yea, let the affections of thy heart be placed upon the Lord forever. Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings, and he will direct thee for good; yea, when thou liest down at night lie down unto the Lord, that he may watch over you in your sleep; and when thou risest in the morning let thy heart be full of thanks unto God…” Alma says it so much better than I ever could, but this poem is my best attempt, and I hope it is helpful.