I love riding my bike on a sunny day. I go about a hundred yards from our garage to the county road, fat bike tires spitting gravel, my legs warming up to the exercise ahead. At the end of our driveway, it’s another football field to the main road where four wheelers and tractors outnumber the F150s on most days.
There’s a yield sign at the end and as I approach it I squeeze my right hand-brake without coming to a complete stop. I’m familiar with this way. My route is the same as the many times before and I know how far it is point to point. Two miles. Four miles. Six miles. Take your pick, choose your course, go.
Once on the half-gravel half-paved road, I coast. This is the fun part of my ride. I take my hands off the brake and enjoy the entire first half of my so-called exercise ride because it’s all downhill. But what a beautiful ride it is. It’s a two lane country road surrounded by pastures of hay where long steel pipes and massive wheels of side roll sprinklers inch along, water shooting out 24/7 during the summer. It’s all about farming here, and preparing for the onslaught of winter and keeping the cattle fed. Thus the miles and miles of hay fields that light up with yellow and purple all summer long.
Leaving where we’ve been planted for the last four years in beautiful Wyoming feels like we’re on our bikes again–pedaling pedaling pedaling–watching the scenery in our peripheral as we go. We came here for many reasons, arriving a bit empty but leaving so very full. Like the many side roads along the main highway of life, this has been the season of all seasons in our lives. I realize more than ever how this quiet, small town has been the best place to navigate our little family during the transition of teenage to adult years. Away from the draw of congested highways and populous school districts to the land of few stop lights and little travelled roads. I have no question it’s where we were meant to be, just like I have no question that it’s time to move on. It’s difficult explaining the uproot to people who’ve never left their comfort zone, their job, their childhood home. Often friends tell me how they’d love to explore a new expanse where they’ve never stepped foot, and often I relay how I envy their roots planted deep in rich soil.
I don’t know why, but we recently felt a release from Jackson, a letting go, a gentle prodding to a different pasture. After praying and questioning, talking and praying some more, Regi and I knew it was time. And one thing that doesn’t scare us is looking ahead and embarking on a new adventure. To where? We don’t know. Oddly enough that’s the part of the journey we rest in because it’s what grows our reliance on God. What would our faith life be if we only released our grip when we were confident of what awaited us on the other end of a decision? I wish it were as easy as saying we heard God’s voice in the middle of the night and here’s the exact plan for what’s ahead. Nope, that’s not the way it happened. So, we’re back on our bikes at the part of the journey where we let off the brake and coast along until we reach our next destination. This part of the ride is where not much is required of us except trust. We don’t have to do the pedaling right now because we’re being pushed along by an unseen hand to a place He has yet to reveal. But, we rest knowing He knows, and that’s all that matters.
And now a word for you who brashly announce, “Today—at the latest, tomorrow—we’re off to such and such a city for the year. We’re going to start a business and make a lot of money.” You don’t know the first thing about tomorrow. You’re nothing but a wisp of fog, catching a brief bit of sun before disappearing. Instead, make it a habit to say, “If God wills it and we’re still alive, we’ll do this or that.” James 4:13, 14