Anyone who knows me (hey, you don’t even need to know me – you just need to have seen me!) knows that I’m not a terribly athletic person. While I love to walk and curl and golf a little, I freely admit I took my last gym class in Grade VII. But I’ve got to tell you – I’m thrilled about a bike ride that’s coming up this summer!
Don’t fear for my heart; I won’t be doing the riding. My job for this bike ride is to stand on corners and point riders in the direction they’re to turn. It may sound boring, but it’s an exciting role for me.
Central Ontario District is hosting the 2008 all-Ontario Bike For Bibles ride, from July 13 to 20. We’ll begin with registration, worship and fellowship on the evening of the 13th in Lindsay, then begin our 7-day trek across central and eastern Ontario, staying in Cobourg, Picton, Kingston, Stirling, Millbrook and Bobcaygeon, before returning to Lindsay again for worship and celebration on the morning of the 20th. It will be an exhilarating trip for riders and roadies alike!
Our cause this year is to raise funds for Scriptures to be provided to new Canadians learning English as a second language through church-based ESL ministries. Friends of the Canadian Bible Society may remember that it used to be customary for CBS to provide a Bible to every new Canadian citizen at citizenship court. We were exiled from citizenship court several years ago, and have not had any success in our attempts to regain the privilege of offering Bibles in that context. So we had to find new ways to reach new Canadians. Beginning in Calgary, then in Toronto, and now nationally, we will be able to offer Bibles to people even earlier than when they arrive at citizenship court. Their time in ESL is often an excellent time to reach newcomers with the gospel. And we are grateful for the opportunity to partner with those who provide these programs.
Helping a new Canadian learn English through the power of God’s Word is an amazing opportunity, and I’m thrilled to be a part of it.
If you like to ride your bike, we’d be glad to have you join us. In fact, you can register online (click “Ontario” at the left, after you’ve read about Bike For Bibles). Not a 100 km-per-day cyclist? You can sponsor a rider by clicking here, too, following the links. If you have any questions about the ride or what’s involved, please email me.
Your participation and your gifts mean much. Your prayers mean much to us as well. Please join us in praying for safety for all riders and roadies, as well as good riding weather for the whole week. And pray that those of us who participate will be united in strong Christian fellowship and will serve as powerful witnesses for the gospel as we travel through communities large and small.
The Apostle Paul wrote, “All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing” (1 Corinthians 9.25-26, NLT). Paul wasn’t riding a bicycle, but the principles still apply. Not only does God invite us to be disciplined physically; he invites us to be disciplined spiritually as well. I may not be much of a cyclist, but I train every day so that my soul may be in top condition as I share my faith and await the return of the Lord Jesus Christ. May that be true of you as well!