Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Pedaling uphill is immediately apparent. The sudden increase in effort is much more vivid to the cyclist than is the visual landscape. It has been said that one doesn't fully appreciate his topography until he bicycles across it. The same efficiency of motion that helps the cyclist move so easily across flat ground also aids Mr. Gravity as he tugs downward against more lofty causes. So climbing with the bicycle is far from incidental. It is absolutely deliberate. Put another way, if you are coasting, you aren't getting any higher.
The noble pursuit of Godliness compares favorably. He who seeks high character is not like one peering around a corner to see if it is there. Instead, he is like one fully immersed in effort, decidedly steering the bicycle up the slope. He desires a higher destination and invests personally in attaining it. He is completely aware of the concept of gliding easily on level ground, and moreover, the ability to turn back, coasting at great speed to the lower places. But with each pedal revolution, he climbs...
Why do we see cyclists in mountainous terrain? Are there no flat-ground places to ride? Of course there are. Cyclists climb mountains because they value the august grandeur of the pinnacle destination and they celebrate the very incremental and doable work that makes it possible.
Perhaps the same is true for the character builder. Perhaps he treasures the higher calling of holiness and delights in the daily discipline. Climbing, with focus and resolve, every ascending moment along the way. Not accidental. Not easy. Just infinitely rewarding.