209 Miles, 96 Churches, All to the Glory of God
A cramazing day to finish up a cramazing week! Our ride today took us to a cumulative total of 209 miles! I am still amazed at how God will use us if we are willing to let Him.
I started the week not feeling ready for this ride. As people asked me about it I told them “God got it,” going on faith that He would get us through this week. As we finished up our 209th mile today I know without a doubt we saw God do it ALL!
He timed our travels perfectly to fit with the appointments He had for us. He sent encouraging riders at the perfect times. He put a bike shop in our path right when we needed a flat tire fixed. He protected our riders from many catastrophes with an awesome ‘rear guard’ in our support vehicle. He pulled our team together to get us over long hills, through tired muscles and upset stomachs along the way.
Every prayer was felt; every encouraging word came at just the right time.
I started today thinking of the truth of Isaiah 40:29, “He gives strength to the weary, and to him who lacks might He increases power.” I watched God do this over and over this week. And today was no exception. We had an unexpected send off from part of our prayer team this morning in Hampton Bays, and an unexpected rider as my sweet husband joined us for one more day.
As our day went on today we had another flat tire, which we changed on the side of the road. (So glad Patrick was with us to help get the tire back onto the bike, my one fear was having to change a rear flat on the road) A rock went through the tread of my tire and left a pretty good gash in the tire. Another cyclist, not from our team, looked at it and really didn’t think it would take us through the day, BUT GOD touched my tire and took us through the day without a problem. Our team worked together to get each other through the hills, as we took turns drafting off each other to get a bit of rest. Our words of encouragement were incredibly energizing as we saw the miles adding up. The opportunities to share, although not as many as we had hoped for, brought some encouragement as several told us they had heard of the project and were receptive to the ministry.
As I rode along this week I thought of the children who would receive our shoeboxes and those who will work so hard to get them to them. Some of the children will walk for hours to get to the distributions. Our ministry partners will work hard to get the boxes through customs and through tough roads, traffics, jungles, over mountains. Some will go to areas where they cannot take a vehicle and need to carry the boxes in their arms to the children. Over our 200 miles we had the opportunity to share OCC with 96 churches. I began the journey offering my loaves and fish for God to use; now I am praying that he will use it to feed many.
Remember my cranky knee that I have been asking for prayer for this week. I have been sitting at work each night with ice packs on my knees and taking pain relievers to combat the pain in my knees. Today as we finished I got off the bike and didn’t have any knee pain, and haven’t had any since. Once again, God showing me that He was getting me through it.
Thank you to each of you who have prayed, encouraged and supported us, you have done your part in the journey well too. Thank you to everyone who rode with us whether for a day or for the week. As I said before, I am humbled by the support and participation that this bike tour brought out.
“If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 4:11). In all we have done, I pray that it was done for God’s glory.
Please continue to pray for the impact of the bike tour to raise up churches to be a part of OCC this year.
“God got it!” Can’t wait to see what He will do with it.
Hang on Tight,
Today was much easier, I don’t know why, almost the same miles, but it was easier. We were greeted in Sayville by some of our prayer warriors, who sent us off in prayer. As we rode I could feel God giving me strength and making the ride easy (as easy as 40+ miles on day 4 can be) and smooth. I had a great time riding with my training buddies today. We were greeted with hugs and smiles by the staff at Grace Gospel Church in Patchogue and had nice visits with several other churches along our route.
As I rode all I could think about was how in awe of God I am. We rode through small, quaint Long Island towns today, much different from yesterday’s hustle and bustle. I am humbled that I was chosen for the task of sharing this ministry with the churches here in Suffolk County. I am even more humbled by my friends who have taken days away from life to join me in the adventure, and even more so because of the joy that I have the privilege of watching the do it with. The smiles you see in the pictures were there all day.
We have one more day left. We’ll be leaving from St. Marys Church in Hampton Bays and riding through Sag Harbor and on to the end. As we have said all week, we’d love to have you join us for any part that work for you. You can find our route at http://www.mapmyride.com/us/east-quogue-ny/shoebox-tour-day-5-route-288656039
Your prayers are very important to us.
– We are praising Jesus for the safety He has given us on the roads. he has protected our riders from injury and falls all through the week. Please keep praying for the same on our last day.
– Pray for the churches we will see tomorrow, although there are fewer than any of the other days, this is an area that we don’t have a lot of participation in. Please pray for an openness to hearing about the project and for God to work in the hearts of these churches and all the others that we have been to this week.
– Pray for our bodies, all of us have tired muscles, all of us are weary. Pray for our endurance through one more day. My knee continues to be cranky, please pray that I will be able to press through to the end.
Thanks to everyone who has partnered with us in prayer and encouraged us along the way.
Hang on Tight,
East Northport to Central Islip – 44 miles, that puts our total miles so far at 126; we’re tired. Today was a hard day, the roads were hard to travel, really chewed up, hard to follow the directions and heavy traffic, but WE DID IT! We shared OCC with 20 churches, many of them the pastor was not there, but we left information.
As we got into the car this afternoon all I could think was how tired my legs were, and I know that all of our riders were feeling the same. God has given each of us the strength to ride strong through the day, but at the end we are ready to rest. Philippians 1:6 says, “Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.” and in Nehemiah it says, “For the joy of the Lord is your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10) I have watched our riders live these verses out. They have showed only joy on the journey and it has been my pleasure to be with them and see them be used by God. I continue to be humbled that God chose me for this task and want all the glory to go to Him.
We had a special guest today, Gloria, one of our NE Regional Managers, joined Fred to watch our backs. It was fun to have her along. We were also joined by my wonderful husband today, who made our day full of laughs and smiles.
Tomorrow we go from Sayville to Westhampton Beach. Here’s our route, http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/288632089 As always we’d love to have you join us for any part of the ride you would like to.
Your prayers are important to us, please continue to pray…
– Please keep me in prayer, my knee is becoming very cranky. I am icing it and keeping it rested when we are off the bikes, but it is making the days harder, not that it is stopping me.
– Pray for safety for us as we continue to ride, a good portion of our route tomorrow is along Montauk Highway.
– Pray that God would go before us and set up our appointments for the day, that we would have the opportunities to share the ministry and grow the shoebox.
– Pray that we would ride strong
Hang on Tight,
Day 2 took our mileage total to 86. Unfortunately we didn’t make it to E Northport as planned, Between Ridge and Smithtown we got to share with 21 churches, but we still saw God make our appointments. The Day 2 Crew began with 4 riders and we picked up a 5th along the way. It was awesome to ride with my training buddies Janice, Laura and Patty. I really enjoyed have Lou Amato join us, loved that he prayed us all the way through the day. You all did AMAZING today. You guys continue to encourage me. Thanks to the guys at Selden Fire Department for their welcome as we passed by on Hawkins Rd today, you are AWESOME!
As we head into ‘Hump Day’ we’re all more tired and getting into some routines as we ride, not a bad thing. But God brought me Hebrews 10:35 – 36 which says, “So do not lose the courage you had in the past, which has great reward. You must hold on, so you can do what God wants and receive what He has promised.”
Monday everything was new and exciting, as we continue on our adventure, I am praying that we would continue on with that excitement. As our muscles get tired, that we would keep pressing on. We are seeing God work through what we are doing and we know that He will continue to work even after we have completed this ride.
We ask that you would continue to pray for us:
– Pray for our riders that their tired muscles would be rested and ready for tomorrow, for their enthusiasm to continue, for our boldness as we continue to share about OCC and God’s love.
– Pray that we would be able to stay on course as we catch up from today’s ride.
– Pray for the churches we have dropped information off to that they would catch the vision of the ministry and for those we will be sharing with in the next few days that they would be open to hear our message.
– Pray that God would steer us away from those who will not be willing to listen.
We keep on keeping on for His Glory.
Hang on Tight,
Day 1 of the Fork to Fork Bike Tour is a wrap. We rode 46 miles and shared with 23 churches. AND GOD SHOWED UP
At one church where we stopped, we were told by the custodian and pastor’s wife that we would need to come back and that we could not leave any materials. While we were preparing to take off again a car pulled into the parking lot and stopped to ask if we needed any help, guess who was in the car…that’s right, THE PASTOR!
We got to not only share with him, but we let him know how much of a God appointment it was and how much it meant that he needed to be a part of the project this year.
He let us know that his church did another project during the same time and that it was difficult to get his congregation to be a part of 2 missions project. When I mentioned Christmas in July he lit up! He asked if we could talk more about it. I love it when God sets our appointments!
A BIG thank you to Fred Engel for driving our support vehicle and for keeping our backs safe with traffic.
To my riding buddy Janice, you did AWESOME today. Rest up we have another 40+ tomorrow, all to God’s glory.
We head off tomorrow from Ridge to East Northport at 7am. Please come ride along, cheer us on and pray for some more God appointments. Find where you fall into the ride at http://www.mapmyride.com/us/yaphank-ny/shoebox-tour-day-2-route-288461669
Please continue to pray for us:
– Praise God for the safety and God appointments we had today
– Pray for those God appointments, He is AWESOME – EVERY day!
– Pray for endurance for our riders, we’ll be at 80+ miles by the end of the day tomorrow.
– Pray for continued confidence and an overcoming for fears as we ride, we had a few silly falls today, pray that the rest of the ride will be fall free.
Hang on Tight,
Tomorrow’s the DAY!
The start of the Fork to Fork Bike Tour. We’ve trained and shared and told people we’re coming and tomorrow we head out. We’ll be leaving from Orient Congregational Church, 23045 Main Rd, Orient at 7am. Anyone in central Suffolk who would like to ride can meet at 43 Sabre Dr, Selden at 5:30am to hitch a ride out.
You can check out our route at mapmyride.com, Shoebox Tour Day 1, here’s the link. http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/288453195
John 6:11 says, ” And Jesus took the loaves, and when He had given thanks He distributed them to the disciples, and the disciples to those sitting down; and likewise of the fish, as much as they wanted.” It was the meager offering of a young boy, even Andrew said, “But what are these among so many?” But Jesus took it, blessed it and multiplied it and thousands were impacted. That my friends is ‘God Math’. The last few days what I have thought as people have asked about the tour beginning is that I am simply offering “my loaves and my fish,” to ride a bike and tell others about Operation Christmas Child.
I offer to You, Oh Lord, what little I have and all that I am, and ask the You would multiply it for Your purpose and for Your glory.
I am humbled to be used and blessed to be given the opportunity. Hope to see you on the journey.
Hang on Tight,
Please pray for our riders,
– for confidence and endurance on our bikes and safety on the roads
– for opportunities to share OCC with many churches along the routes
– for our message to go forward, not just the message of the shoebox, but the message of God’s love. We may have opportunities to share with others along our routes