The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost–It has made all the difference!

Recently, at the webinar, a mom asked, “How did you face your friends and family who didn’t understand your ideals?”

Taking a risk to do life differently, better, following God’s trail by faith, has changed the course of the Clarkson history–but, by taking the road less travelled, we have witnessed the miracles and provision of the hand of God in amazing ways.

This, one of my favorite poems, (and I made all the kids memorize it) reflects the faith, following ideals, road.

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both,
And be one traveler , 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;
But 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 marked the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted I would ever come back.

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


Since the first year Clay and I were married, we tried each fall to go drive through the mountains to see the aspen when they changed to the golden and read and bronze. A mother is the god-ordained professor who is to open the soul and mind of her children to the truths reflected in God’s creation. God has provided ample evidence of His wisdom, power and beauty in each season.

Last weekend, Clay said that he thought we should take the time to go for one day to the mountains before we left to make time to see the beauty together. Though we were all busy, we are so very thankful for the way it filled our souls to marvel at His handy work and to reflect that each season has its own beauty and evidence of God’s intimate involvement.

“Two roads diverged in a yellow wood.” What a beautiful poem this is–and such a rich amount of wisdom to discuss and reflect with your children—choices have consequences, whatever decisions you make will determine much of the rest of your life–it is so important to let God’s word and truth direct your priorities and decisions. And I love the last line, “And I, I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.”

Clay and I took the homeschooling road when no one thought we should. We moved our family into ministry situations with us all over the world when no one thought we should. We raised support when certain family members thought we shouldn’t. We left a good job and security and insurance and went 5 years without a salary to start Whole Heart Ministries when it seemed crazy. We committed ourselves to idealistic discipleship grace-based parenting when others thought we would ruin our children. Obviously we have not lived a perfect life and have made mistakes along the way. However, we made our decisions by faith, based on convictions we found in scripture. Our desire was to please God, to build foundations that could not be shaken. God has been so faithful to us each step of the way–we took the road less traveled by and that has made all the difference.

Today, I celebrated the 93rd birthday of my oldest, sister type friend’s mom’s birthday. We had a chocolate party for her (brownies, cake, cookies, candy bars and mousse–it was her favorites) She has lived through two World Wars, the depression, breast cancer, the deaths of her husband and two of her three children. Yet, she has lived to see God’s faithfulness.

This summer, fire devastated and destroyed 500 homes. Now we are in the midst of a crisis of flood over our whole state. This year, 3 precious ones have committed suicide that are dear to us. Several of my best friends have had cancer.  We could all be tempted to panic when life feels so uncertain. 

Yet, taking the risky roads less taken has taught me that God is trustworthy. He is in control, He will be faithful to us as we walk roads of faith. It is an important for us to teach our children to have the courage of their convictions to take the road less taken-the road of faith, the road of ideals. Life does not always turn out as we would expect it to, but God is always faithful. We all only have one life to live in which to live by faith in God, to trust in Him and rest in His peace when we are tempted to panic. We are given one life to live for His ideals and for His convictions. Then we will see Him face to face.

Let us be bold before His throne in this challenging time. Let us be of those who do not shrink back. Let us be of those whose hearts remain steadfast even in the midst of trials. God will be faithful to us. We will grow and be stretched and become less selfish and more mature and give our children a better model –if we stay faithful to his call upon our individual lives. He will call each of us to different ideals, but He will call us to step out in faith, in courage and in ministry. May His goodness and mercy follow us all the days of our lives and may we resist fear and live by faith until we see Him face to face. May God give each of you a special gift of His grace and peace in the midst of your trials. May He allow you to reflect on His beauty in creation as an example of His seasons and may each of you have a peaceful heart. Many blessings of His grace.

As Sarah recently wrote, “Hard realities–broken hearted facts are not ignored but faced with grace. This rises up with a lifestyle of hard work and community that, while never denying grief, yet seeks to move through life with a fragile but real hope.”

Indeed, God led us to take the road less traveled, and that has indeed made all the difference.

The Discipleship & Discipline Webinar

Over 1,000 moms joined us on the Discipleship & Discipline Webinar! If you weren’t able to attend the live course, now you can get it on-demand. If you would like to get access to the Webinar, simply click here. It was so much fun, and we are so excited to share this with you.


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  1. says

    Have a great time Sally. I needed that. I know with all of my heart we have chosen the path that is pleasing to the Lord although there are days when I feel swallowed up by what the world says is “good enough”. Some days I wouldn’t mind giving in, but not today!! :)

  2. Carrie says

    Beautiful! Beautiful, picture of you guys! Maybe I should just not read the news and have ignorant faith in Him, like a child, and ask what is a stock market????

  3. jill meadors says

    This was such a confirmation for me, a reassurance…thank you. I had to memorize that poem in Junior high, but I never really had thought about it the way you put it until now. I am facing a big mountain right now, but I am, with the grace of God, letting go and realizing that God is in control and He will guide me through this. I am choosing the path of Jesus and releasing it all to Him. I am getting out of the way and letting the Holy Spirit work….Thank you for your post and for your encouragement….

  4. Beth M says

    Hi Sally, Great, great photos, and memories I’m sure. You set such a great example of appreciating life though it’s hectic and difficult. Prayers are going with you to England! Have a wonderful, exuberant time!

  5. says

    Sally, what a beautiful picture of you and Clay! I have similar ones from visiting my father in the Durango, etc. area when a little girl. There’s nothing to compare to Colorado’s aspens!!
    Thank you for this encouraging writing–we’re still early in our homeschooling, and it’s bolstering to my resolve to have your perspective! One of your books is always on my nightstand, and I often flip through and find an underlined paragraph that speaks to me. Your ministry was the catalyst for our entrance onto this path, and I am continually praying for your protection, peace, and blessing as you continue yours!!
    Have a blast in England :)

  6. says

    Sally, you are one women I sure wish I knew personally! Your words inspire me and encourage so much! That poem is one of my favorites as well. This weekend my husband and I will be celebrating our 5th anniversary, and we have a whole day and night without the kiddos, and we don’t know what to do being broke and all! After you two going to the mountains, perhaps my husband and I can do something similiar. Thank you again for this blog!!!

    • Sally Clarkson says

      Here it is history online. And now we are friends and wrote a book. Rewrote this post but wanted you to see what I found. So thankful for you. :)

  7. Karin says

    I loved your site and especially your poem ‘Two Roads’.
    It has always been my favorite.
    I suppose because when I came to the crossroads of my life, I chose the road less traveled – the Lord’s narrow one – and it truly has made all the difference.
    Have a Blessed Day!

  8. Karin says

    I loved your site and especially your poem ‘Two Roads’.
    It has always been my favorite.
    I suppose because when I came to the crossroads of my life, I chose the road less traveled – the Lord’s narrow one – and it truly has made all the difference.
    Have a Blessed Day!

  9. Broken says

    This is great–exactly the pep talk I needed (sorry for the cliché term). As soon as I responded to your Sept 12th post a few minutes ago this post was up. Your exhortations here are the answer I was looking for before I try to sleep tonight. Thank you Sally. God’s good timing and neither of us knew it!

  10. says

    Your words spoke to my heart today in an indescribable way! Thank you so much for sharing your insight and wisdom through the gift God has freely poured inside of you. You are such a blessing!

  11. says

    Sooo good! I just this morning finished the book How Should We Then Live? and so your post was a perfect confirmation of all I’ve been thinking on as I read this book! My children and I have been memorizing “If” by Rudyard Kipling and now I will add this one as our next to memorize list! Beautiful! :)

  12. says

    This is one my favorites as well. Just yesterday I read it aloud again to my very young children. I get chills every time I read it. Thank you for your example of “Taking the Road Less Traveled” and constantly reminding us of how the grace of God met you all along the way. You are an inspiration and true source of wisdom for many of us homeschooling moms whose family and friends do not think we should be doing much of what we are doing!

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