A few weeks ago I headed out to my local trail for a nice 8 mile bike ride. I had been logging in the double digits before, so I figured 8 small miles wouldn't be a big deal.
It was a beautiful late summer afternoon. The weather was perfect, the scenery gorgeous, and one of my favorite songs, 'Sailing Away' by Styx, was blasting in my ears. I felt good, really good.
A few miles into my ride I started getting a big tired. That's when I came upon this in the middle of the trail. written by a chalk angel:
I couldn't help but smile and agree. Yeah, I totally got this!
I began to pedal faster and pushed myself, renewed and refueled by the chalked encouragement. Then I got tired again. It was as though my chalk angel knew what I needed to hear, because as I slowed down, and even considered stopping to take a break, I came across this:
I restarted my 'Sail Away' song and continued strong up the path. I looked down at my speedometer and realized I was riding at my fastest pace ever. The power of words and encouragement!
I didn't see another message from my chalk angel for a few miles, but continued to ride hard. So hard that I lost track of where I was, until I saw this:
Yes! The toughest part of the ride was almost over, and I was about the glide down a large hill--my favorite part of the ride! Then, a half mile from the end of the trail, my chalk angel left me one last message:
And finish strong I did!
As I drove home my body tingled with the after-work out buzz, but my mind was still on the trail, and life.
Life can seem like a long bike ride. There are uphill climbs and downhill glides, tough corners to turn and straightaways to where we can enjoy the scenery. We have families to raise, church and community responsibilities to take care of, work and all the other things that come with life.
But God is always there, supporting us and cheering us on. Most times, however, He helps us through other people. And most times, the other people have no idea they are helping us. He uses us to help each other--and many times we aren't even aware of it. I'm sure the person who wrote those things on the trail had now idea I'd be biking that day, but the words impacted me nonetheless.
I believe He puts people and things in our paths to help us along, to offer strength, encouragement, support, guidance, and fun.
We are all here having the ride of our lives. How comforting it is to know that we are not alone, that He is helping us-through each other- to make it through. :)