“It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them.” – Ernest Hemingway
And boy, oh boy, did I sweat up the hills and coast down them today. I rode solo, 72 miles, with 3623 feet of climbing into a headwind, from the beautiful beaches at Kaiteriteri to the gorgeous and quaint alpine community of St Arnaud. It was the most difficult day of the bike tour for me, even though I stopped briefly a couple of times to tour an off the beaten path sculpture garden and a honey factory.
I would call the day “voluntary suffering”, as I was beat by the ride and eaten by sand flies by the time I arrived at the campground in St Arnaud. However, it was a great day of riding and spending time with God, and sharing God’s love with others along the way, as I went from this…
I also enjoyed my supper with a couple of generous and lovely people from England, who shared watermelon and tea with me. Perhaps I looked a bit tired and pathetic with my one little can of stew and two pieces of bread. They were so generous to share. Meeting people from all over the world has been one of the highlights of my trip.
Going solo – Scott and I decided to go in different directions today during our final week in New Zealand. It gives us the freedom to explore and gain different experiences. I enjoy freedom!
Romans 8:20-21 states this joy of freedom in a different context, but reveals that God wants His creation to be free from the bondage of corruption and sin: “For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.” I long for, and anticipate with trust, the day that I will be set free to fully reflect the glory of God. I long for the day when His creation will no longer suffer from the sickness that we see everyday throughout this world. I long for the day when all things will be made right, and His children will finally be set truly free. How are you looking forward to this day of redemption?