Cycling and Peace
87“Before a major bicycle race the riders are supposed to be, if not at one of the seven levels of serenity, at least calm and purposeful…” Samuel Abt, Cycling Writer
As we reflect upon this demising year, take an overview of your cycling purpose. While you choose your favorite from the holiday goody tray, what was your specific cycling pleasure of the year? Your enjoyments show as much as your disappointments. In fact, career counselors say pay attention to any strong emotions as indicators of your particular problem to solve, your unique assignment. Cycling evokes your passion alright, or you would dread to experience these daily inspirations about it.
We get so winded in our seasons of competitions and comparisons, our calm is smothered. Countless times I’ve counseled racers in bad form, financial ruin, and relational distress who, ready to let it go, still had a conviction that something was not yet completed. Indeed there was work to do in each case: learning resourcefulness on a strict budget; patience while physiological adaptations finally take hold; reuniting separate lives through communication; taking a dream as far as reality permitted.
For others the new year may bring a downsizing or shifting of cycling’s place: learning how life is without training as your profession; transitioning to a different role or team; living out a suspension.
Resuscitate your excitement by remembering why it draws you. This may be an extrinsic reason, such as prize money or praise; but think a little harder and figure out what’s behind it all. From the same cup as joy comes peace, an inner surrender to your life on this road because… [your heart’s answer.]
It’s as if we’re called like clergyman to this sport because it demands so much of us and is more than a job or a past-time. Celebrate this calling and breathe new faith, hope, and joy into it for this coming year. The peace of knowing its meaning for you will drive you to finish strong in your destined race.
Prayer for Peace
“A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones.” 88Proverbs 14:30
We are thankful that we’ve been called to cycling for some special purpose. We confess we entangle this within the destinies of others. We ask for peace to show us our own clear road.
Ponder Is my cycling troubled; how can I change course? Affirm I am at peace with my direction and duties. Watch peace be a road map which gives clear signs for my designated route, even with switchbacks ahead.
87“Tale of a Cyclist in Need of Victory,” by Samuel Abt, Sports Editor, International Herald Tribune, published April 7, 1998 on www.iht.com
Author Samuel Abt, associate editor for the International Herald Tribune, is based in Paris and has written about bicycle racing for over two decades. His Tour de France reports are published regularly in major periodicals, and he’s produced a shelf of books about cycling.
88The Bible, New International Version, Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society