With a roar of motors from the bikes above, we pulled out of the church at 8 AM. The destination: Julian, an old west mining town in San Diego County. The first prime part of the ride: South Grade Road on Palomar Mtn. Some experts claim this and the Tail of the Dragon at Deal’s Gap in North Carolina lay title to the most twisty and difficult biker roads in America.
We stopped at the base to preview the next 7 miles, to be celebrated with breakfast or pie at Mothers, up at the top. With a sport bike, a sport touring bike, and three Harley cruisers, our pace was apt to vary, but I wished to keep us all fairly close. So I took it slow with my sport tourer, with Ben right behind on his sport bike. He could have blown my doors off, said metaphorically. Ruben, John, and Scott followed pretty close on their cruisers.
But after a few miles, my bike almost begged to let it be a bike. So gradually, I kicked up the speed, with Ben still close, but the gap widening with the cruisers. They were soon out of sight as Ben and I let the bikes play the curves, leaning and using our handlebars to maximize the speed. No, we didn’t get crazy, but the grins got pretty wide, and we had to wait a bit for them at the top.
Ruben, smiling, said, “I thought you were gonna stay close,” and I responded, “I had to let the bike be a bike.”
Or, the bike was designed to go quicker up the curvy road than a car, or even most large bikes. That was its purpose, its teleology. To which Ruben responded, again with a smile,”So our bikes don’t have the same purpose to go fast?”
We then had a nice discussion about now various styles of bikes are designed for different types of riding. Sport bikes: to go fast and handle the turns. Cruisers: to have speed, but mostly in a straight line, and with remarkable stability. Sport tourers have more stability than the sport bikes and corner nicely, but aren’t as quick.
And the discussion gave the topic for this post: we need to identify and develop and exercise our unique and individual design, which allows us to maximize our personal Christlikeness.
God created us all with unique abilities and interests and experiences, and we need to be that person he designed us to be. We shouldn’t all be pastors, but some should. We shouldn’t all be building contractors, but some should. We…well, you get the point. So, let’s examine five brief steps you can spend some time pondering on how to apply them to your life.
1. Know yourself, as you are. Identify your strengths, weak areas, interests, joys, personality. Pray about this, and get input from wise friends who can be impartial. They often have more perspective than we do about ourselves.
2. Know yourself, as you can be in God. Look ahead. How can you develop and grow and serve?
3. Be true to 1 and 2. As God directs, craft your life to be the genuine you and maximize it.
4. Minimize doing what doesn’t match 1 and 2. And, realize that we have to pay a lot of dues in life to get by, so don’t think you can avoid them all. J
5. Trust in God to guide and empower you in the process. Don’t try to do it all alone.
And as you do this, you’ll get to the top of your mountain in the manner that matches who you are.
Kick Starting the Application
Have you ever spent time examining who you are? If not, why? If so, what have you found? How does the direction of your life match the purpose God has designed within you? What change can you make this week?