Here we are, at the beginning of 2024, hoping for a year of Peace, Happiness and Good Health.

As we move on into this New Year, we become conscious that our lives, like a train, are speeding towards their final destination. Having lived at railway stations all my life, I am very aware of the continual movement of trains in and out of the platforms. Indeed a train’s purpose is to transport people of all ages, races and genders to their respective destinations. The train of life is likewise the basis for a network of connections and relationships that we form throughout life, which are so important for our own wellbeing and the success of our life’s journey. I have often noted the joy on the faces of those returning from a holiday and the sadness of others leaving home for the first time.

When we board this train at birth, the chief people on it are our parents, grandparents and siblings who feed, nurture and teach us the lessons of life. School and adolescence brings new companions on to our train. As it moves along, we become bigger, wiser and more independent, until the time comes for us to make choices, become employed and welcome others on to our train. At different stations, our grandparents and parents must step off the train, leaving us with siblings or relations. All along the route, people board or step down from our train. Some form bonds with us; others Feb reflection 1are never remembered again, which is sad. Our train of life carries joys, sorrows, expectations, surprises, disappointments, hello’s and good byes.” There is no return ticket for any of us. No chance to begin again and reverse mistakes, but as C.S Lewis wisely said, “You can’t go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are, and change the ending.”(Quotable Quotes of C.S. Lewis)

To have a good train of life journey, we need to form reliable relationships and leave deep “footprints on the sands of time.” Many of the people we meet on our train are like “ships in the night.” We never see them again, but we can leave them with a good impression by a friendly smile, a kind word or a helping hand. Sooner, or later, we, too, will step down from the train at a particular station. Others will continue their journey without us. As we vacate our seats, the good memories we leave behind, of having been people who loved, forgave and inspired others, will help those coming after us, to pass on our influence to future generations, as the train of life continues to roll and rumble down the tracks through the years ahead.

“Lives of great men all remind us

We can make our lives sublime.

And departing leave behind us

Footprints on the sands of time.”

A Psalm of Life (New York Dutton and Company 1892) Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Feb reflection 2

Images: Clipart- website/

 Sr Una Rutledge, RNDM.