"The first step is the dream."
-Anonymous, The Children's Garden, Van Wert, ohio
"The beginning is always today."
-Anonymous, The Children's Garden, Van Wert, Ohio
"WHAT THE caterpillar CALLS THE END OF THE WORLD, THE MASTER CALLS A butterfly."
-Richard Bach, The Children's Garden, Van Wert, Ohio
Century.5 = 109.03 miles today! We found an Indiana license plate too! We didn't even have to use a screwdriver to get it!
We did some major route changes for today so we could be in Van Wert, Ohio this evening. Jonathan and I departed from Lucerne, Indiana around 7:30 this morning and arrived in Van Wert around 6:30 P.M. The winds did not cooperate again but did subside somewhat. The road surfaces, generally speaking, were smooth with good shoulders. The weather was super with sunshine and no rain. And . . . we can check off another state on our march to the Atlantic.
Along the way today we met Donald. He is from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and headed home. He rode his bike to California some time ago and is now headed home. Unlike us, Donald carries all his gear with him. Jonathan and I are spoiled, thanks to Margaret. We carry nothing but our snacks, two tubes, a spare tire, maps, an air pump, water, and tools. Donald probably has 40 to 50 extra pounds of equipment to pedal up the hills as he rides. We put all of our stuff in the Explorer and ride light. Yep, we're spoiled.
When Jonathan and I arrived in Markle, Indiana we met Margaret, Jim and Joyce Goins (Margaret's brother and wife), and Jane Clifton. We sat and sipped Blizzards while we talked about the trip. It was so good to see them. The reason we changed our route today was so that we could work out a meeting with Jim, Joyce, and Jane. I didn't know we would get to see them so soon on the ride. I am so glad we did. We were also able to visit with them at Dairy Queen and later in Van Wertl.
In Van Wert, we met Dave and Kim Clifton. Along with Jim, Joyce, and Jane, the whole crew went to Pizza Hut and had a great time talking and laughing. Afterwards we visited The Children's Garden and then came back to Dave and Kim's home.
We are staying at Dave and Kim's house tonight! A real house and we get to stay here! Can you believe that? The last time I stayed in a real house (ours) was April 22! I'll probably get up in the morning looking for the lobby and continental breakfast!
This has been a day of family, friends, and fun. On the Dave Ramsey Show, he's the money guy on talk radio, he is often greeted by callers with, "How are you today Dave?" His response is always, "Better than I deserve." Well, today was better than I deserve.
Better than I deserve is also called grace, isn't it? I know what I deserve in life but my heavenly Father is the originator and designer of grace and he's very generous with it too. In my lifetime I have been blessed over and over with what I do not deserve. I consider myself one of the richest men in the world. I'm talking about riches that cannot be lost, taken from me, or destroyed. I'm talking about things like relationships, family, friends, laughter, peace, love, joy, and memories. I have overdosed on God's grace today. Today was an absolute triple-dip!
Jesus told Paul in 1 Corinthians 12:8b, "My gracious favor (grace) is all you need." It worked for Paul. It works for me. It works for us all. Let's not take it for granted.
I am blessed . . . better than I deserve!