I SOOO wish I could see you at ACFW Conference and hug your neck! I'm so proud of what you've accomplished and where you're heading. I hate it that you're hurting but know God will give you comfort and physical healing as He has given you emotional healing in the past. A change of direction is never an end of a journey, just a different path. Love and prayers go with you!
It’s Not About the Bike
Since I began this Road to Freedom Bicycle Tour across America, I’ve said that it’s not about the bike. It’s about getting into the lives and hearts of the women who I come in contact with day after day whose lives are changed.
They have been liberated, healed and have gained courage to face their fear and find the freedom they were meant to enjoy. I’ve met such incredible people on this trip. It’s been amazing and I’m so grateful to God that He chose me to ride my bicycle for women who don’t have a voice.
While the Road to Freedom will not end, it appears the bicycle portion is completing its course. I injured my shoulder on day four of the tour. It’s been up and down but I’ve been nursing it back to health. While pushing my bike last week through ten miles of soft gravel, I apparently completed tearing what was only a partial tear to the rotator cuff. I received a diagnosis of a full thickness tear.
My original plan was to ride back to Evansville, Indiana Monday, stay for a couple of days and slowly meander northeast to arrive in
Indianapolis on September 11th for the American Christian Fiction Writer’s conference. That would give it a chance to calm down and begin the healing process. Five more days there would be just what I would need to complete the rest of the tour.
I set out on Monday morning at sunrise heading back east, careful to avoid the soft gravel road. I’d covered about 55 miles of a 70 mile ride when I tore the medial collateral ligament in my knee. I was on the side of the road for about an hour sitting and praying. Every time I stood up, I would get dizzy and nauseous, a clear indication it was more than just a tweak. I had a serious injury.
Thankfully, I was close enough to my destination that my two new friends, Clydean and Melody, were able to come pick me up. I rode safe and sound in the comfort of a vehicle for the remainder of my journey.
As word began to spread of my injuries, I have received an incredible outpouring of well wishes, concerns about how disappointed I must be not being able to continue my ride. Although I am so grateful for the outpouring of love and support, this recent turn of events has done nothing to deter me from my mission. The Road to Freedom is alive and well, and soon to be well traveled.
Though I can’t get on the bike right now, it’s not about the bike. Every mile I’ve ridden has been filled with challenge, ministry, hardship, fulfillment, excitement, fatigue. God has always led me to minister to others. That’s who I am. That’s who He’s called me to be.
My friend Melody said it perfectly, “well, if you can’t go to them, we’ll just have to bring them to you!” We already have ministry scheduled in her home for tonight!
The Lord is showing me that the Road to Freedom began on the bike, and will continue as a foundation to help women who have been the victims of violent assault and sexual abuse. That will be the direction Road to Freedom takes. What began on an bike in the vast wilderness of country roads in America will reach more people than I ever thought possible.
The bike gave birth to something that the country has hooked on to and will be used for years to come to minister to women who have suffered in silence far too long.
I will remain in the Henderson, Kentucky area until September 11th writing, planning and preparing to take Road to Freedom to a greater level.
I will continue to blog about the experiences, adventures and truth God reveals to me through this amazing journey. I need you more than ever to help me spread the word about Road to Freedom. Though it began on two wheels, it was never about the bike, but rather about the 1 in 3 women in our country who will be violently attacked or suffer sexual abuse in their lifetime.
I will also work on the book that is coming out of this amazing adventure. I now have the time to do it!
Through your help, encouragement and prayer support, I’ve been able to reach thousands of women, some–like Kayledean–we’ve met and shared the celebration of
triumph. Some we’ve wept with as they poured out the stories, finally having someone who would listen and understand. Others we may never meet but they are being touched nonetheless.
We have momentum and it didn’t come from the bike. It came from you helping me get the word out. And the word continues to spread. We have to keep it going. I may be shipping Dakota home but the Road to Freedom will continue to be the path I take. Please continue to take the journey with me. I’d miss you terribly if you didn’t.
Women need us. We need to bind up the broken hearted and set the captives free.
Reba, I'm so sorry for all your injuries. And yet, God is so clearly in control. And yes, He's in control of the rest of your trip--however you take it.
Really look forward to seeing you at the conference.
Thank you for taking us along on your amazing adventure. I've looked forward to your messages every day to read what you and God are doing. It will be exciting to read in the future what God will do with your offering. I wish you a peaceful rest and healing.
@jeanie_fran Keep reading! the adventure continues! Thank you for all your encouraging messages during my bike tour. You kept me pedaling forward!
Oh, Reba, so sorry to hear about your injuries, but you have inspired so many already. Rest and heal.
You're right, it's not about the bike. It's about you letting the Lord use you as His vessel to roll into lives and refresh and carry them into new places in Him. I'm proud of you, Reba, and believe you're exactly on divine schedule.
@dtopliff Already God has shown me how the Road to Freedom will continue to minister to these women and women all around the country. The outpouring has been incredible!
I am so proud of you and your commitment to bring peace and joy to women who are hurting. Bless you my friend. Praying your knee will mend soon!