Back in August while my family and I were on vacation, we spent a day or two with some good friends out in Lancaster, PA. Jeff and I took advantage of one afternoon and went out for about a 30 mile bike ride together through the beautiful and serene landscape that is Lancaster County – farms, rolling hills, covered bridges, hardly any traffic. It was a great workout but, at the same time, a relaxing ride.
As I rode along, I enjoyed good conversation with a friend I don’t see nearly enough. But there were also times of quiet as we just churned out the miles. In those quiet moments I started thinking about everything that I loved about cycling. At the same time I was thinking about ministry and I started seeing some life/ministry lessons that I could learn from my ride and from cycling in general. So over the next several days, I will try to make some sense out of those thoughts that percolated in my mind that day as we rode along.
Cycling with friends is more fun than riding alone.
I usually ride alone. But every now and then I ride with someone else – like Jeff on that beautiful day this past August, or with my wife (now that she’s messed up her knee and isn’t supposed to run), or my buddy, Wayne. There’s nothing like rolling along and enjoying good conversation, laughing, and even struggling together up a climb.
Ministry is the same way. It is much more fun when you do it with others. I spent some of my very early years in youth ministry doing it alone. Twenty-seven years later I couldn’t imagine ever doing ministry alone again. The friendships, laughs, memories that are made with others as you serve together are priceless. The struggles that you go through together make each of you stronger. There is no room in ministry for Lone Rangers. It is much better, much more fun doing youth ministry with others. Don’t cheat yourself of that joy.
Tomorrow: Maintaining your equipment, and growing with your equipment.