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Life is a Highway and Why You Should Ride It

by Barbara Sandlin, rider and support crew missionary, nurse in WI

600 miles? I am still in shock at riding such a crazy distance. Looking back on the National Ride, and on all the training and preparation leading up to it, I am in awe of all the Lord did through this mission. I loved the experience so much, I truly believe that everyone has something to gain from being a Biking for Babies missionary.

A big thing in Biking for Babies is knowing your WHY, which is a big deal when you’re writing fundraising letters, waking up insanely early to get on the bike, or trying to explain to your friends and coworkers why you’re voluntarily riding so many miles.

Everyone’s WHY is a little different, and it’s beautiful to hear missionaries share what brought them to this unique mission.

When I signed up for Biking for Babies, I had no idea what an amazing community I was joining, or how much riding I would end up doing, the people I would meet, or the lessons God was going to teach me.

I chose to ride with Biking for Babies because I believe women deserve better than abortion.

I’ve been involved with the pro life movement for a while with volunteering at pregnancy resource centers (PRCs), the March for Life, clubs in college, etc. But when I heard about Biking for Babies, I knew it would be something special.

I love how the organization gives directly to PRCs, which are at the front lines of the fight for life. I’ve seen so many women helped by PRCs in my own community.

In my work as a labor & delivery nurse, I see just how much women need support, and I am heartbroken when I think of how many women and babies I don’t get to meet because of abortion.

So, WHY should YOU do Biking for Babies?

  1. If you want to experience God’s providence, then just ride 600 miles with a group of strangers. From the beginning of my training, one thing became clear: I could not do this with my own strength. I remember first thinking that when I got sick the week I wanted to start training, and when I was feeling overwhelmed with how getting all the training done would happen with being a full time night shift nurse. During the ride, there were so many moments that I just wanted to quit and actually tried to come up with a good enough reason to get off the bike! But it turns out God gave me JUST enough grace to get through each mile. What I learned from this is that I needed to focus simply on the present moment – one pedal stroke at a time. This is a great lesson for the spiritual life. We are easily overwhelmed by our feelings or what we think is possible or impossible based on our limited human perspective. But God is so much bigger than we think He is. He will grant us the graces we need moment by moment, and not all at once or in the way we think it should happen. So for those of you who think riding would be impossible, nothing is impossible for God!
  2. By participating in the National Ride, you will learn how to suffer better. Putting yourself through the suffering of the ride (or the craziness of support crew) is not easy. But you are not made for comfort, you are made for greatness! The ride took my every ounce of fortitude, and remembering the mission was the only thing that kept me pedaling. What stopped me from quitting was that I had a reason to suffer. My view of suffering has changed since the ride – I more readily offer my sufferings for others, and have seen the power of suffering for a worthy cause. “If you really want to love Jesus, first learn to suffer, because suffering teaches you to love.” – St Gemma Galgani
  3. Even in the pain of the ride, there will be joy. I had so much FUN on this mission I was not anticipating! The way our team bonded so quickly surprised us all. I think part of that was the realization that completing the mission alone would be impossible. We relied heavily on each other for both physical, emotional, and spiritual support. Doing the Lord’s will fills your heart with something more than just happiness: JOY! I learned from the ride what it truly means to be joyful in suffering. “All human suffering, all pain, all infirmity contains within itself a promise of salvation, a promise of joy.” – St John Paul II. What I found really helped me during the tough times is singing. Not just singing myself, but asking other people to sing. One early morning is when we discovered the perfect B4B theme song: Life is a Highway by Rascal Flatts. 2021 Northern Route definitely sings it best!!.

One final thought on WHY Biking for Babies is that the pro life movement needs you. Women and unborn children need each of us to fight for them. I’ll let my favorite pro-life quote speak for me:

“When the time comes, as it surely will, when we face that awesome moment, the final judgment, I’ve often thought, as Fulton Sheen wrote, that it is a terrible moment of loneliness. You have no advocates, you are there alone standing before God — and a terror will rip your soul like nothing you can imagine. But I really think that those in the pro-life movement will not be alone. I think there’ll be a chorus of voices that have never been heard in this world but are heard beautifully and clearly in the next world — and they will plead for everyone who has been in this movement. They will say to God, ‘Spare him, because he loved us!'”
-Congressman Henry Hyde

Go ahead to the application page!