Today is Monday. Normally I would be on my way to work in Ohio on a Monday. However, today I find myself waking up in Buffalo, N.Y. in a church with a bike helmet next to me. Oh yeah, we are biking 100 miles today! Get up, fuel up–let’s ride!
After thanking Lafayette Ave. Presbyterian Church, which we stayed at, it was time for our daily send off prayer. A few folks from the community joined in and we traded some stories and prayers. I shared a story that Ryan told our group earlier in the trip.
In brief, Ryan visited a very poor area of Peru recently. There he met two young children that had nothing more than glass marbles for toys. Excited by having Ryan as a visitor they taught him to play marbles with them despite the language barrier. When Ryan announced his leaving, the children offered him the only gift they could: their marbles. Ryan gave each cyclist marbles to remember this story and share with others.
Please remember there is always room to give. I have passed some of my marbles on and look forward to sharing this story and marbles with more folks along the way.
During today’s ride we experienced flat tires, scraped knees (my knee), sunburns and plain exhaustion. But this did not dampen our spirits. We all pursued spreading The Fuller Center’s message and in some cases received donations on the spot. At one of our 20-mile rest stops an elderly lady drove up to us and asked what we were doing. After she listened to us for a minute she handed us a $20-dollar-bill and said, “God Bless you all, what a great cause.” This was my most gratifying moment today. Yes, 100 miles on a bike was quite an accomplishment today. But it was more rewarding experiencing this stranger’s kindness and generosity.