It was a beautiful Monday in western Colorado. A fantastic group of bikers were staying with us at Ministry Haven. They had just finished attending the 30th annual International Serenity Run and were staying with us on their way back to Phoenix, AZ. The International Serenity Run is a clean & sober motorcycle run hosted annually in Cedaredge, CO right before the big (and not so clean and sober) Sturgis run. The ISR website describes the Serenity run as, “a great time to experience a weekend of friendship and fellowship while camping (or moteling) with other clean and sober bikers and motorcycle enthusiasts at the foot of the Grand Mesa on the western slope of beautiful Colorado. We welcome members of all 12 step fellowships to join us in some of the most gorgeous surroundings you’ll ever see.”
The Serenity Run gets its name from the serenity prayer used in most 12 Step programs. “GOD, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. Living ONE DAY AT A TIME; Enjoying one moment at a time; Accepting hardship as the pathway to peace. Taking, as Jesus did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it. Trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His Will; That I may be reasonably happy in this life, and supremely happy with Him forever in the next.”
It was such a beautiful day. Some of the group wanted to just stay at Ministry Haven and relax and enjoy God’s scenery and each other’s company. Others wanted to take a ride to Silverton and back to see even more of God’s beautiful creation. The group finally decided on making the ride to Silverton. The plan was to take the scenic ride to Silverton and then return to Ministry Haven for a time of fellowship around the camp fire. That was the plan. But as we all know too well, sometimes our plans can change in an instant.
The group had just left Ministry Haven and as they began descending Norwood Hill, tragedy struck. The lead bike (a couple riding double) had pulled ahead of the rest of the group, so as they hit the big curve at the top of the hill the group lost sight of them. A few moments later as the rest of the group rounded the curve they came upon debris from a motorcycle and then they saw their friends amidst the wreckage of their bike. The group rushed to their friend’s aid. After an hour that seemed like an eternity, the injured couple was transported to the local clinic emergency room and then airlifted to a hospital in Grand Junction, CO.
Some from the group went to Grand Junction to be with their friends while the rest came back to Ministry Haven in shock, trying to make sense of it all. We still aren’t sure exactly what happened. All we know for sure is that these two wonderful friends were badly hurt and we didn’t know if they would live. Later that evening reports from the hospital came back that both riders were severely injured but they would be okay. Please keep the two injured riders and their friends and family in your prayers (names withheld for privacy).
Life is a mysterious journey. We may think we are in control. We can make plans and direct our life on a certain path but the truth is we never really know what’s around the next corner. What we can control is how we respond to those unexpected change of plans. We can let life’s disasters break us, or we can live life with serenity: “GOD, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. Living ONE DAY AT A TIME; Enjoying one moment at a time; Accepting hardship as the pathway to peace. Taking, as Jesus did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it. Trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His Will; That I may be reasonably happy in this life, and supremely happy with Him forever in the next.”
May we all learn to live out the serenity prayer every day of our life.