In the Pink and Politics-Free

Here is an amended version of the politics-free Thought for the Day that went out on Radio Ulster on Thursday morning... It was recorded before news came out that both Cathedrals in Armagh have altered the timing of their services to accommodate the Giro or I may well have commented on that (if that was permissible...)
Well, with the beginning of May the run in to the Giro D’Italia is picking up pace, with pink-tinted bicycle themed events popping up all over Northern Ireland… even in places the peleton will go nowhere near… For example the Donaghadee lighthouse is turning pink as part of their Giro DEE Italia event, and the Navan Centre’s website that says that this coming Monday the Celtic warriors there are going to swap their traditional blue woad for pink in honour of the coming Giro… And there was me thinking that the Ulster Cycle was a series of Celtic stories and ballads… When it was actually a bronze age bike! I also got a leaflet for a shop having an event celebrating vintage cycling and recycling (can you see what they did there!?) and have seen one church on the Giro route with a pink bike affixed to their notice board.
Anyway… I hope that the current enthusiasm for the Giro encourages more people to get on their bikes… though I don’t think that you’ll get me donning dayglo lycra cycling shorts any time soon…
I really enjoy cycling but not in any competitive sense… I was actually late in learning to ride a bike… probably 10 or maybe 11 before I taught myself on a second hand ladies bike with a basket on the front, belonging to one of my friend’s sisters… Though it was blue, not pink.
Because of my late start to cycling, I made sure my boys learned to ride a bike as soon as they could… I wasn’t necessarily the best of teachers. There were plenty of crashes and scratches and bumps and bruises… But we got there in the end. I was later comparing stories with a friend when he told me that when he was teaching his daughter he eventually got her going in a large empty carpark with a significant slope… But as she zoomed down the hill she shouted back at him “Daddy I can’t remember how to stop pedalling…”
As adults many people don’t know how to stop pedalling. We live in a world which rewards workaholics with more work… and more and more… until finally you can’t pedal any faster and disaster ensues.
We’ve forgotten that God built into the cycle of days and weeks a night time for sleep and a Sabbath for rest…
Do you observe a Sabbath? I’m not asking whether you attend church on a Sunday? That is an entirely different question, and for many involved in churches Sunday is far from being a real Sabbath a time of rest…
Whether or not worship is part of your weekly cycle, make sure that you stop pedalling for at least one day each week… For some, stopping pedalling may involve going out cycling, or, when the Giro comes, going out to watch it… Or getting involved in one of the related events…
It might help to keep you in the pink…


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