As Vice President of Marketing for KT Tape, Taylor was thrilled his company could be a sponsor of the Fuller Center Bike Adventure. He was even happier to join others from KT Tape on a Bike Adventure Build Day in American Fork, Utah, where his company is based. But spending a day on the bike with the group and exceeding his expectations by pedaling 80 miles with the Adventure provided an exciting illustration of God’s gifts.
“Fuller Living” features the people who make this ministry possible, talking about their experiences in their own words.
KT Tape helped support the Fuller Center Bike Adventure, an admirable charitable organization with strong Christian roots that raises money through bike tours to help build and restore housing for people in need.
We took Friday, June 28, off work at KT Tape to participate in large service projects at three different homes in American Fork. It was an impressive sight to see so many people making a major impact on someone’s home.
The next day I joined the bike touring group that was traveling from Seattle to Washington, D.C. as they made their way through one of their Utah bike ride segments. We started in downtown Salt Lake City with an ultimate destination almost 80 miles away in Heber City just a couple miles from our house.
I figured I would start the ride and make it halfway through or so before I dropped out. While I love long bike rides, most of my rides are with the kids and the longest ride I had ever completed before was about 30 miles.
The morning started out beautifully with perfect weather and beautiful trails down the Jordan River Trailway.We were even joined in the beginning of the day by several speedskaters from the US Speedskating team, which KT Tape also sponsors and has their headquarters in nearby Kearns, Utah.
I was pleasantly surprised that I was not having too much trouble on my heavy touring bike keeping up with the far more experienced riders. As the day wore on, though, the weather got quite a bit hotter, the hills got steeper, and my legs started to feel the toll. My hands were getting particularly sore with all of the downward pressure on the handlebars.
There were three rest stations throughout the day, and at each stop I noticed myself becoming progressively more tired and starting to slow down quite a bit compared to the rest of the crew, especially going up hills with my heavy bike.
At the last rest stop I had a choice to make: do I end the day there or do I push onward and finish the last leg toward Heber City? I decided to give it a shot and push through. The last segment had some of the steepest hills, and my heavy bike (which I later weighed at 46 pounds loaded) really struggled to make it up the hills with my weakening leg muscles. I progressively moved further and further back in the pack until the “sweepers” caught up with me. I had to tell myself several times an adage that I heard growing up: “A turtle may be pokey, and a turtle may be slow, but a turtle always gets where a turtle wants to go!”
Somehow I made it. I could hardly believe it. About 80 miles from Salt Lake City all the way through Utah County, Provo Canyon, and Heber City! And to add to the miracle, my muscles weren’t even sore at all in the forthcoming days. Remarkable. I did have some numbness that I had to overcome over a couple days, but my body absolutely held up for an epic bike journey.
How was that possible? I think I know the answer: I was involved in a good cause surrounded by good people, and the Lord gave me help. I’ve just been reading in 1 Corinthians 14 which talks about the gifts of the spirit. During my mission in Spain 20 years ago I experienced several of these gifts as I struggled to convey the gospel message to atheists and agnostics in a foreign tongue. I knew the Lord blessed me through spiritual gifts during that two year mission.
Now I realize that the Lord blessed me yet again with a spiritual gift — a gift He wants all of us to receive — the gift of endurance. Enduring to the end is really the challenge for all of us who follow Christ. After bringing Him into our lives the rest of our mortality is dedicated to following His footsteps as disciples. It’s not an easy or short journey, but it is so worth it.
As we push forward we encounter long and hard trials, weaknesses we discover and strive to overcome, mistakes we make and need to repent of, harm and abuse from others around us, and the normal temptations that beset us as mortals. We need to strive for the gift of endurance, of enduring to the end. It usually helps to journey along with other disciples for companionship, encouragement, help, and direction.
On the bike ride it was so fun riding alongside so many neat people in the Fuller Center group and getting to know them. They were generous, fun, and full of spirit. I think being around others with a common purpose in Christ can help us refine and hone our spiritual gifts and achieve our greatest potential.
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