Sunday, July 22, 2012

You Gotta Do the Hills - July 21

The men arrived back on the Hudson Campus Saturday at noon - right on schedule!  We praise God for more that 8000 miles ridden with no accidents or injury from the ride.  We will post some final thoughts from Tony and dollars raised from the Challenge in the next few days once everything has been tallied.  In the meantime - we wanted to share this reflection from Pastor Joe which is from his Red Like Blood Blog:

I just finished up the CCC Bike Challenge. I rode my bicycle along with 17 other men from Cincinnati to Cleveland. We covered nearly 400 miles in 5 days. This is the second year we have done it.
This year was tougher on me. I spent probably the same amount of time training on my bike. The difference is I didn’t do as many hills as I did last year in training. Hills are the toughest part of cycling. I started riding the flats and kind of fell in love with it. I started avoiding hills and the more I avoided them the more I stayed away from them.
Now I know why a cyclist has to do hills. I labored at times on the trip. Here’s the thing. I find myself more often than not praying for good days. A good day is like riding the flats. I love a good day. And when God sends me a hill I wonder what is going on. But there are things only hills can do.
Paul the apostle was thrown more hills than most. He seemed like he got to the place where he liked them because he understood what they would do in his life. This is what he wrote in Romans 5.
And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God is poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
If you find yourself on a hill today or tomorrow this is what I want you to do. Don’t try to get off it right away. Lean hard into God and let the hill do the work in you that only a hill can do. Eventually the difficulty you are going through will finally pass and in its wake it will leave you with a strength you did not have before.
This bike trip was a reminder of what happens when I stay away from the hills. I needed the strength that only the hills give and I didn’t have it. So, it is back to the hills for me. I hope to see you there.


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