I woke up to a gorgeous moderate morning and it wasn’t very long before I started seeing posts on Facebook asking if anyone wanted to ride. Since riding is out of the question for me today I decided to ponder awhile on the approaching motorcycle riding season.
We work all winter on making sure our bikes are road ready, that we have reviewed all safety information, we polish, we shine, we buy new gear for both us and our bikes (love bike bling) and we await warm weather.
That got me to thinking about how we prepare ourselves spiritually for the upcoming riding season. I happen to think that what we do spiritually is as important as what we do mechanically, actually, both are vital.
I think that God has called us to go out in whatever our particular area and search the lost from where we are. For me it happens to be a bike ministry. No matter where your particular ministry unfolds, it takes preparation. Imagine if the pastor got up on the pulpit with no prayer, forethought, or ever opening his Bible. I don’t think he would have a very effective ministry.
I think the habit all too often is to not really think about spiritual preparedness and just hope something comes to mind when we find ourselves in a situation to share the gospel. While formal training may not be necessary, thoughtful prayer time and preparation certainly is.
When one thinks of evangelism we often think that it usually comes through relationships but in the world of motorcycle ministry that is seldom true,chance meetings usually happen in parking lots, gas stations, restaurants, camp grounds, event grounds, laundry mats, motels, etc. None the less, our opportunities to evangelize are always God given.
If you have a desire to spread the good news and don’t want to be caught tongue tied, you had better prepare beforehand. Throw a slim line bible and a few religious tracts in your saddle bags, anything appropriate they can take with them to stud a later day. If you belong to a Christian MC, put your colors on each and every time you ride. I have had incredible response to that.
It seems a good idea to have a general idea of what you are going to say in such a situation and have some scripture committed to memory. This can be tricky and should involve a lot of prayer and bible time as each encounter is as unique as the person that crosses your path.
Another thought crosses my mind; there are many people around our hometown who ride once the weather gets nice. Can you imagine the outcome if each biker talked about Christ to just one other biker a day on his ride. Unfortunately, even for those of us who have made it our mission to spread the gospel many do not consistently do that. I don’t know about you but that is not the testimonial I want to leave.
I have decided to have a plan or sorts to make my time on my bike as beneficial as possible. I start by asking myself these questions, am I secure in my relationship with God? I throw this question in because this situation happened to me not long ago. A person and I were talking about relationship with Jesus and this person said to me, “well I hope I am going to heaven but I am not sure, it is something I am confused about”. That condition is no condition to take the steps to share your faith with others, be sure you are headed to heaven before you try to guide others there.
Realize the commitment you are making, no longer is it “just a motorcycle ride” now we ride with a purpose and for that purpose to be fulfilled we have to go into it with a total life commitment. It can’t be a partial commitment on only the days you feel like it. Commitment to Christ, is a wraparound commitment that totally envelopes us. I have been guilty of confusing great emotion with a great explosion of faith. Don’t depend on feelings to spread the Good News, depend on God’s Word.
Utilize the Christian support around you to practice. Pray
The motorcycle crowd is a thirsty bunch and from my experience a trustworthy and honest bunch but they can also be direct and not have a lot of diplomatic filter, which is how I tend to be, so be ready to give the reason for your hope in Christ, don’t be wishy-washy and don’t leave them hanging, learn what it is that makes you believe as you do and be ready to convey that message.
We have to get a little thick skinned because we won’t always be met with a positive or an immediate response. Just remember you aren’t in this alone.
Expect negativity. The world we live in seems to have a bias about the institution of the church and I find I get much further if I don’t start with church and start with my Savior. The conversation about church in general though important can be impersonal; to talk about my Savior can be immensely personal.
Be accessible, consistent, relevant, practical, and genuine, be where the people are, and above all, be Christ-centered. God expects to use you to further His Kingdom; do you expect to do that?
Go out and pray, find others and pray with them, talk about the one who saved us and wait while God uses you. When riding, your time with someone may be short, so simply remember…….The word of God is profoundly simple and simply profound!
When we speak of Christ to the lost we cause all of Heaven to rejoice, that is just cool!.
There is no experience in life more exciting and rewarding than undertaking the task of fishing for men and we get to troll with our motorcycles. That seems like a perfect combination.
Go out and fish!
……………and so I ride