The Rev. Cal Lord: Living a godly life is like riding a bike

Cal Lord

The last time I rode a bicycle for more than a few hundred yards was back in 1974.

As a teenager, I rode all over Eastern Connecticut and would put on as many as 75 miles a day. I was the Forrest Gump of cycling. The only thing that determined how far I could go was how much time I had. I felt like I could ride forever.

All that changed the day I received my driver’s license. From that point on, I drove everywhere.

I thought about that this morning as I got on my youngest daughter’s brand-new bicycle. She is a freshman at Iowa State University. We bought this bike for her to have on campus and kept it at the hotel last night.

Being the good dad, I volunteered to make the five-mile ride to campus this morning. I figured it would be a piece of cake with all my riding history. Well, let me tell you, it wasn’t that easy.

Within two minutes, my hamstrings were killing me. Going up a little hill left me wheezing and gasping for breath. Never mind the way the seat impacted my backside. I felt like a wimp.

It wasn’t my past history that kept me going. It was my pride. I wasn’t going to call my wife to pick me up.

As I was halfway to Rachel’s dorm, I was struck with the thought that living a godly life also seems a lot easier when we are thinking about it than when we are actually doing it.

We are confronted with hard ethical choices every day. Even if we were raised in a faith-filled home and were grounded in Scripture, we are still tempted to follow whatever the culture says and make the easy choices. Many of us do just that.

The truth is, the only way you and I can truly live the godly life is to go out and practice it every day. It is like riding a bike.

The more you do it, the easier it becomes.

When it becomes part of your lifestyle, you no longer need to think about it. You will be more apt to make the right choices, the choices that please God.

So take it from a guy who got back on the bike this morning. You can do it. All you have to do is start pedaling again. It will come back to you if you are willing to try.

God bless. See you in church.

The Rev. Cal Lord is a Norwich, Conn., resident and serves as pastor at Central Baptist Church of Westerly. Reach him by email at