Thursday, August 18, 2005

Old Stage Coach Road

After breaking my collar bone about this time last year, I am back on my mountain bike trying to ride 2-3 times a week. So yesterday, our Summer Youth Intern, Jason Evangelista, lured me into my longest ride to date.

We met at the Apple Farm, got on the 101 North, then got off at Old Stage Coach Road, climbed to the top of the Cuesta grade and then came down a great trail called "Shooters" that emptied out in Poly Canyon.

Though I about died, the ride was awesome! Jason was kind (or crafty) in not telling me exactly what I was getting myself into.
I have been preparing to preach Matthew 14:22-36, the text where Peter walks on water with Jesus. So I was thinking about the nature of faith in all its dimensions. As I slowly climbed up Stagecoach Road, it was good that I could only see a section of the incline in front of me, because if I would have seen the whole enormous hill from the outset, I probably would never have made it. But I couldn't see around the next curve. Between here and there, the path was pleasant and shaded with trees. I could hear the creek in the canyon below me. So I just took it one piece at a time and tried to enjoy each section as it came.

In my faith walk with Jesus, I always want to know exactly what's ahead, but maybe it's God's mercy and grace that He doesn't show us the whole road, but only the next bend in the road. If we saw what was up ahead, maybe we'd never make it. Maybe we'd get discouraged and give up instead of going on. He knows the plans He has for us. He knows where He's leading us. Our challenge is to enjoy the trees and the creek even while we're sometimes climbing the hill in agony. . . by faith.

So Jason smoked me to the top. He probably was waiting there 10-15 minutes. But I made it. He was kind and didn't rub it in too much. Once at the top, we got to experince the breathtaking views and the rush of coming down the long single track.

Thanks, Jason!

Oh yeah, the picture is of Jason, somewhere near the top of Shooters, taken with his mobile phone. That's San Luis Obispo in the background. He looks pretty serious, doesn't he? (Yes, that's my finger in the corner!)


Jeff Martin said...

Way to go guys. Love that ride. Next is pick n' shovel, morning glory, red dog ridge, and down and dirty. All within a stone throw of what you just road. You are finally getting the local dirt baptism! No crashes this time or what we call carcassing!

Great analogy Tim regarding faith. This stuff is a great time to give glory to God.

You and Jason should join me in the South County and ride the Lopez routes. Their tough but worth it...

Keep your brothers posted for a big ride together.

Erika McGuire said...

Your analogy helps. It's funny, I've always looked at faith as frustrating. If I could just know when a trial would be lifted, or why I was going through something in my life, it would be easier to endure. But not necessarily. Yours is definately less of a "glass half empty" way to look at faith. I have always liked the "Footprints In the Sand" poem, saying how God carries us during the hardest times in our lives, for the same reason.

Andy Gibson said...

Yes, we need to get a good group bike ride together. Mine hasn't been out in 2 months, and I just bought it in March. That should be illegal.

Peter K. Kardel said...

What? Tough South County routes? When and where?

BTW, climbing Morning Glory is more interesting than Stage Coach. No time to notice the pain ;-)

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