Do you remember when you first learned how to ride a bicycle? Did you have training wheels or just a parent breathlessly running behind your bike? Or were you like me…did you have both?
For a child learning to ride a bike means freedom and adventure. Soon you find yourself on the open road, and you feel all grown up.
Of course riding a bicycle also can come with its own risks and dangers. I will never forget the afternoon I rode my bike back home from elementary school as a first grader. I felt all grown up as I navigated my way back home that was until I had encounter with the beautiful rose bushes out in front of our house!
I can close my eyes today and see myself in slow motion wobbling toward the rose bushes with their thorns at the ready to make their mark on me. In an instant I went from all grown up to a crying little boy running to his mommy! I must admit that bloody encounter with a rose bush put a damper on my biking adventures for a little while.
Recently I have noticed many of my peers have climbed back on their bikes in sleek spandex uniforms that make them look younger and fitter. I fear if I donned such a suit you might see my chocolate fed “love handles” a bit too much.
These young at heart riders hit the roads and highways of our region and even the mountains of New Mexico for fun and exercise. Our city is filled with great bicycle clubs like EP Cyclists and the El Paso Bicycle Club.
This weekend watch out on the roads for many of your friends and neighbors as they participate in the 2013 Bike Out Hunger Ride in El Paso. Juan Ortiz, one of our own, will mount his bike and hit the road to “bike out hunger.”
His desire to join this fund raising effort that will directly benefit “El Pasoans Fighting Hunger” began one afternoon when God opened his eyes to hunger. Let Juan share his story in his own words:
“Last week as I was getting gas at Albertsons by UTEP, I saw a man going through the trash can looking for food; he was eating out of the trash. It broke my heart. Took the man and bought him food. I know God put me there for a reason. If I can help one guy then riding my bike would help more people. I always ask the question, what would Jesus do? He has done for me more than I deserve. We all can make the difference.”
You can join Juan on his ride to “bike out hunger” in our area by being one of his financial sponsors. You can sponsor him per mile or by a generous one time gift. He will be riding nearly 50 miles on Saturday, May 25 across the hills and plains outside of East El Paso.
Robyn and I will be sponsoring him and hoping he avoids all the “rose bushes” and cactus along the route, and I hope you will join us.
You can give on line by logging on to:
Or you can give a designated gift to our church. Your gifts will help “bike out” hunger in El Paso so no one will have to dig in the trash for dinner. Thanks Juan!
NOTE: You can still support Juan online. He did his part! Let’s do ours!