Last month, as you may recall, I decided to take up bike commuting for Lent, in part as a way of returning to something that once gave me life. But life is a funny thing: It rarely looks the same tomorrow as it did yesterday…
Some things remained the same. Riding a bike still makes me more aware of my body: I discover again just how powerful legs and feet and muscles and tendons can be in getting me from point A to point B. And I discover again just how vulnerable skin and bones and pounding heart can be, outside the protective shell of an automobile, struggling mightily to climb steep hill after steep hill at a snail’s pace. I am humbled by the vibrancy and vulnerability, the deep physicality of it all.
But some things are quite different: Four years ago, I biked through the streets of a college town in southern Indiana, to a job where I wore tennis shoes and a baseball cap. Now the details are different: I need to carry (surprisingly heavy!) dress shoes, and arrive at work presentable and professional, ready for a whole host of different tasks than I was involved in four years ago. I have to figure things out all over again.
New life is like that. And that might be worth remembering as we enter this Easter season, a time when we’ll notice again the presence of new life: the new life God springs up in nature, and the new life God springs up in us, too. It will be new life with all the vibrant and vulnerable beauty we remember, but it will be different, too, and we may have to figure things out all over again.
Thanks be to God that we don’t do this alone! One of the reasons bike commuting in Seattle is so doable – and so much fun – is that there are plenty of bike lanes and bike trails and respectful cars. Why? Because there is a whole community of bike commuters out there who have made it that way over time. It’s a little like our church community, making our paths out into the traffic of the world doable – and fun.
I pray God’s blessing upon us all in this season of new life.
2 years ago