Creeks and Tender Feet

A while back on our way to Nett’s Grocery near Fly, Tennessee, we rode a new bicycle route which was picturesque almost beyond words.  For miles we followed a shaded country lane adjacent to a crystal clear creek. Pedaling past flocks of wild turkeys, hay fields and dilapidated barns we were cooled by God’s air conditioning – a gentle breeze coming off the babbling water. As our peloton sped down a steep hill into a scenic valley our testosterone rushes hit new heights.  We felt as close to flight as men can experience without leaving the ground.

After a time we sensed that we were a “bit” lost and stopped to check our position. Our navigator broke the bad news that none wanted to hear. Yes, we would have to turn around and “charge” back up the hill in order to get on route. Oh the moaning!  Then Bob suggested that the road just a stone’s throw away on the other side of the creek would take us to Nett’s and eliminate the hill. Initially there wasn’t much interest in fording the creek, but as we considered the alternative the decision was made to go for it. Not wanting to ride the next thirty or so miles with wet feet, we removed our shoes and began to walk (or more accurately tip toe) through the water while pushing our bikes. Trust me you have never seen or heard anything quite like the quasi macho men of “Team Flomax” moaning, groaning and even cussing a little as all of those lily white feet slowly and delicately traversed the rocky bottom of the stream.  Eventually we all made it across with no harm done. Unfortunately, creeks often meander; meaning that in this case we rode about a half mile and had to cross again. Oddly enough, with crossing number two there was more laughter than moaning.

Our group was a cross section of professions. We had an architect, CPA, capital manager, healthcare VP, structural engineer, manager, journeyman   and a pastor.  Each one a success in his field; guys who can bicycle over any hill in Middle Tennessee; yet, could barely make it fifty feet barefoot through the creek X 2.

Two thoughts:  Life is chocked full of surprise creeks that  will attempt to spoil our ride and steal our joy. We can choose to cross them one step at a time or retreat.  Second, everybody has “tender feet” — hidden weaknesses, but those weakness can’t hold us back if we are willing to walk through the pain to the joy. As we relaxed at Nett’s recounting our journey, we realized that the painful crossings of the creek were in fact the very highlights of our ride.

Something to think about

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