Maps are great, but they don’t tell me everything about the ride each day. The mileage is quite accurate as are the directions on when and where to turn. The bike maps have a section that gives me a rough idea about elevation gains, but this information is much less specific and often misleading. There have been many times when the climbs look impossible and are actually very doable while other times they look easy when they are nearly impossible. The maps also have a section that describe the typical weather for each month of the year. Of course, this information does not tell me what the weather is going to be like on any given day of the ride.
Now let’s look at the ride today and compare it with the map’s information. The ride was 3 miles shorter than I had calculated from the map, which is actually unusual. The climb at the end of the day was much more difficult than it appeared on the map. The road surface was less than optimal which is very important to know for any given ride but is not addressed on the map. I began riding in a dense cloud cover that gave way to sunny skies. Four hours into the ride a thunderstorm developed with heavy rain for 30 minutes. The sun came back out accompanied with such high humidity that I wished it was still raining. And of course the maps were of no help in predicting such weather.
Maps are important. I could not make this trip without them. And once I learned how to read the TransAmerica bike maps, they have been an invaluable source of information and direction. Their purpose is to give me information about the location I am riding for the day and how to get to where I’m going.
The Bible is like the TransAmerica maps. It gives me great information about the world in which I live. It gives me directions on how to get to my final destination, heaven. And it gives me information about what to expect along the way. The actual ride through life, however, will be filled with challenging climbs and unpredictable weather changes that the Bible does not specifically address. We get into trouble when we expect to get information from the Bible that is not there. I am thankful that God has given us the Holy Spirit to be with us and guide us through our specific challenges and trials. He also gives us mentors to help along the way. So the Bible is our map to get from this earth to the New Earth, but never underestimate the need for your personal support team that starts with God’s Spirit and is rounded out by God’s church. You might otherwise misread the map and find yourself stuck in a rainstorm halfway up an impossible hill to climb.
Ride Stats: Total Miles- 62.7 Elevation Gain- 4,957 Avg Speed- 11.1 mph Avg HR- 114