In his poem The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost spoke of the decision to take the “one less traveled.” He ended the poem with the line “and that has made all the difference.” Once again, I was reminded that great reward lies along the road less traveled. Here is how it came about.
This past Sunday morning I had a great time speaking at Danville’s First Baptist Church, and maybe later I’ll write about how good it was to be there. For now, let me tell you about the challenging part of simply getting there. Last Friday’s winter storm left the road from Little Rock to Danville a bit icy. But that’s not all. My wife and I had Saturday night reservations at the lodge on Mt. Magazine, just 20 miles from my speaking engagement in Danville.
Even though the lodge was open, the staff didn’t advise we try to make it, especially not up the south side of the mountain. Being ready for a little adventure, we decided to go for it. The trip from Little Rock to the base of Mt. Magazine was pretty easy in our four-wheel-drive Suburban. The final 10 miles up the south side of the mountain was another matter. Most of the road had not been plowed or sanded and the snow got a lot deeper the higher we went. But we made it to the top.
On the mountaintop, every twig and blade of grass was ice-covered. The trees bowed low under the weight of ice and snow. The parking lot at the lodge was pretty much deserted, and when we checked in we realized that the dozen or so guests who were there were mostly the ones who had been snowed in for a couple of days. Many of the staff had been there for days as well. But we made it. It was really nice to have an entire lodge pretty much to ourselves. A restaurant to ourselves—sit wherever you want in the lobby—go for a walk in the snow and not see anyone—have an entire lodge staff there if you needed anything.
That night, the sky above the lodge cleared, but the clouds settled just below the mountaintop. It was like being on a small island just barely above a sea of white clouds. The full moon reflecting off the snow and cloud tops was so bright that you could read a newspaper by its light. On Sunday morning, the sunrise was like nothing I had ever seen. The bright orange sunlight broke above the vast smooth sea of cloud tops. It looked like you could sail along the clouds all the way to the horizon in any direction. I took pictures, but they don’t do it justice. Like trying to photograph the Grand Canyon, being there is the only true way to fully appreciate it.
We could have played it safe and stayed in Little Rock. No one at the church would have blamed us for staying home. We could have spent the night at an apartment the church owns there in Danville. It was available. We could have chosen a number of other paths, but taking the road less traveled made all the difference.
That’s a bit like the work we do at Family Council. Not many others have chosen the path we are on. But for those who have chosen this path, or any other path God has placed them on, there is great reward along with the toil of ascending to the mountaintop where He wants you to be. I hope and pray that God will direct you to your own “road less traveled.” When you get there, I believe you will find that it made all the difference.