When you ride a bike in the mountains, or any long, out-of-the-way road, the only people you see are other riders.
A couple of weeks ago, I rode from Tryon, NC up to Saluda, NC. I left from a parking lot near Tryon and rode a few hours up to Saluda and then took the express down –a seven mile fast descent. And, from the time I left the parking lot heading up the mountain, it was at least an hour and half before I saw another person, and it was a fellow cyclist going the other direction. I didn’t know this guy and will never see him again, but for a brief moment, we had something in common: a love of pushing ourselves to exertion and throwing up (I mean, cycling).
More often than not, when you ride somewhere out of the ordinary, you will see very few people; and the ones that you do see, you will feel a strange connection with. During another ride recently, the Tour de Cure here in Columbia, I somehow ended up between groups of riders. I spent nearly two hours riding by myself, which is somewhat daunting on a ride like that because the route usually is unfamiliar to you. But, I remember how relieved I was when I finally came up on some riders at a rest stop.
If you ride at a park or in a busy downtown area where everyone goes, you will more than likely see many, many people along the way. That’s because it is probably an easy, flat ride that is good for every type of rider. When you step out and do something different or harder, like a century or mountain ride, then the number of people you see will be considerably less, and at times, nonexistent.
Our walk with God is much the same way. As we try to follow Him and lead a holy life, we will only occasionally run into someone going the same way. Unfortunately, most people sitting on the pew beside you, or singing in the choir, are living in a comfortable little world that they’ve built, and they try very hard to keep it from getting disturbed. And if that is you, then so be it. But, if you feel like God is calling you to more. To reach more. To say more. To do more. To see more. To be more. Then, as you travel that road, use the people that God sends you as a time of refreshing, an oasis.
It can get lonely on that road sometimes, just remember to keep going. Just over the next hill could be someone to ride with you and be your friend along the way.