When I go out for my bike rides, I usually always try to ride into the wind first. Get the hard work out of the way and then enjoy the tailwind on the way home. This has been my cycling M.O. since day one.
I recently went out for a fall bike ride to take in some of the fall colors and get in a few last road miles before I have to shackle my bike to the indoor trainer for the winter.
As I left my house, I was greeted by a gentle breeze. Nothing serious, just a pleasant warm fall breeze. Keeping in line with my ride into the wind first mentality, I pointed my bike directly into the day’s weak wind.
Fast forward 5 miles into my ride and that subtle breeze had transformed itself into a full force headwind capable of turning the fallen leaves into stinging projectiles. I continued to pedal despite the leaves bouncing off my carbon frame with a surprisingly loud thud.
The strong headwind had turned my easy fall ride into a challenging battle of man vs bike vs wind vs hills. I started to question why I even rode bike and why I was pedaling this stupid contraption towards some silly predetermined turnaround.
I crested a small hill and was greeted by more wind driven leave missiles. It seemed as if each leaf was strategically aimed at my legs, arms, and face. The longer I pedaled into the wind the more I became convinced that all of these leaves striking my body were going to leave welts.
It then hit me like a leaf across the face, why don’t you simply turn around. Why do you keep going forward despite the suffering? Each pedal stroke brought a steady stream of burning legs topped off by a fresh barrage of leaf induced welts.
Why don’t I just turn around it would be so much easier to go with the wind?
I continued on towards this arbitrary turn around line in the road and the closer I got it the clearer it became. I continued into the wind because I chose to. I made the choice to pedal myself towards that silly line in the road. No one but myself was forcing me to pedal towards that line.
I reached that line and once the bike was turned around and the wind was safely at my back, I thought about my life. It was at that moment I realized that just as I chose to pedal towards this spot in the road, I choose every morning to wake up and follow Christ. No one forces me to pedal into the wind, but myself and no one forces me to follow Christ but myself. Christ doesn’t force me to follow Him, it is a choice I make.
There are days in my life were it may seem easier to stop following Christ’s path for me. Where I would rather turn around and go with the flow of modern society rather than stand in opposition to it. Yet despite this temptation I continue to follow Christ and His will.
Following Christ is not always an easy thing to do. There are going to be times where you will be asked to suffer for your beliefs. When those times arrive in your life resist the temptation to turn around and go with flow. Instead, put your head down shift gears and keep pedaling. Yes, simply keep pedaling and one day you will find yourself smiling, wind at your back and the light of eternal life upon your face.