Beth A. Leasure
Prayers for the Peloton
Week: Cycling Community November
“If outside of rolling enclosure please obey traffic laws, do NOT run stop signs. We
have enough memorial races.” Beth Wrenn-Estes, Race Official
Cycling is full of mysterious groups, and we are a clan-like
people. We form little tribes in order to battle with other tribes and
celebrate our peculiar subculture. It’s a “we versus them” viewpoint,
and our universe may only be as large as a local group ride.
In this rebellious environ, authority is viewed with suspicion.
I’d been racing a while before I noticed an official without looking
through him and only then because he’d addressed me by name
startling me out of my racing stupor-superiority complex. It was much
later as a team director, when I realized that I was now in some kind of
parallel plane with these strange figures who wore uniforms and carried
clipboards and often looked grim. It was no longer we versus them;
now they were necessary to help me clarify details, gather information,
and guide others. Imagine, these are people who love rules, remember
details, and can spot numbers faster than a speeding bullet!
With an expanding spirit, I now appreciate the value of this
skill-set and its protection of my riders and their results. Suddenly, the
guy in stripes barking from a motorcycle seems justified to me because
he was thinking about rider safety. Appreciation turned into admiration
when I started to remember their names, learn about their lives, and
realize many of them are former racers. Take a ride in 21Com One and
you get it: they are our biggest fans in many ways, rarely forget what
we do, and are racing along with us. They have a face, and while it may
look a bit dour whilst scrawling figures quickly on a notepad, at dinner
after the races – they’re laughing and swapping tales just like racers do.
Prayer for Race Officials
“Respect the authorities, whatever their level…Exercise your freedom by serving God,
not by breaking the rules. Treat everyone you meet with dignity.” 221 Peter 2:12-14
We are glad for the authorities who protect our riding freedoms through
order. We recognize our defensive, arrogant bent to protest/rationalize.
We pray for graceful interaction if we differ, for their keen observation
and fair judgment and ask blessing upon officials.
Ponder Am I knowledgeable of rules and teachable when my actions
are questioned? Affirm I am strong even when silent. I am kind even
Prayers for the Peloton
when I disagree. Watch how others treat you when you treat others