by Leah Spurlin
This morning started off with a devotion from the words off a Millard Fuller recording. It was so encouraging to hear from the founder of the Fuller Center who poured his heart out over and over for its purpose! The day was beautiful as it started out overcast and rainy. Most of the ride was spent in Amish countryas we shared the road with their horse and buggies. Being able to see the simplicity through these families, their children out playing in the saturated fields of water, waving as we passed by.
Despite the rain it was beautifully peaceful!
The blessings continued tonight as we made it to South Bend, Indiana to the opened arms of the Kern Road Mennonite Church. We enjoyed fellowshipwith members from this church and the stories shared by Leroy Troyer, former board member of Habitat for Humanity and the Fuller Center for Housing.
It is hard to justify through pictures or words the things we see, the scents we smell, the people we meet, and the experiences we daily face. I tried capturing some of this the best I could through this poem:
Just Another Day on the Bike
Up so early, eager to rise
The morning routine now engrained inside
Butt cream, sunblock, orange jerseys, and black tights
Mostly done as others still live in dreams under the stars’ lights
A filling breakfast, a checklist for all chores done
Forming a circle, a devotion, and cue sheet routes as we await the rising of the sun
The pumping of tires, the sounds of bike shoes clipping in, the groaning of sleepy chains
Heading due west on empty roads in the morning light or drizzle of rain
Saying a prayer for all cyclists, preparing my heart and mind
Thanking God for this miracle of a day and the new friends in the town we left behind
Routes on trails, by lakes, across mountains, and by contrasted greens of farm land
Muscles burning on climbs, wind in your face as we fly down all with the help of an encouraging word or a biker’s hand
Riding alone, in small groups, or a peloton train
Stopping every 20 miles to fuel our bodies so we can sustain
Enough energy to gain strength and prepare attitudes for what is waiting
Knowing the work we do for others alleviate people who are breaking.
One wall painted, one floor laid, one load carried to a dump
Can leave one grateful, one restored, one’s head lifted up
Amazing support through pictures taken, time given, and Oreo high fives
All while pedaling a bicycle, trying to live simple lives
A new township entered, a new home for the night
Hugs from strangers, delicious food that is such a delight
Homes of various churches, the Kensington house, and a unique archery loft
Humbled by angels who accept us, giving spirits whose hearts are amazingly soft
Bikes lining the wall, mats spread on the floor
Sharing life stories and the day’s treasures that we explored
So honored to be a part of this adventure we daily face
Thankful for the Fuller Center, their purpose of ending poverty housing we chase.