Just ‘Cause

The bridge on Coastal 1

I’ve been away from Wi-Fi and cell phone service for the last few days. It’s been an adjustment to not be able to connect, but being cut off from the outside world has afforded me the opportunity to be mindful of the interactions I’ve had with people I’ve met along my journey and what G-d might be trying to say to me through these seemingly random interactions.

After a long day of 34 miles of climbing and descending  on Wednesday I camped beneath the giant redwoods at Big Sur campground.


One of the fellow cyclists I camped with her was a young man named Darrin from Ireland.  He was riding from Seattle to New York via San Diego.  He had come to the US to take the place of one of his country men who was tragically killed as he started out on the journey to raise funds and awareness of people suffering from a disease.


One Wednesday while riding from Big Sur another cyclist joined me on the road.  He is taking a 15 month break from school to raise funds and awareness about human trafficking.  He name is Daniel and we chatted and prayed together before parting ways after lunch. His website, by the way,  is ridethroughtraffic.org.


Once I ran the 1st 26.2 miles of a 3000 mile bicycle ride that was planned by a young Brethren man from Iowa to raise money and awareness about issues of world peace.  Tragically, he was killed shortly before he started his cross country ride.  So, like Darrin from Ireland,  the Church of the Brethren put out an invitation for some of the rest of us to take up the work.  I did my part and was glad to do so.

As I was preparing to take this journey I had generally 2 reactions from people.  The most common reactio was “you’re nits!” (See my previous post on that subject.)  The  next most common was, “What are you raising money for – or awareness of?”

While it is admirable to take on a challenge for a just cause, that doesn’t mean we cannot take on a challenge just ’cause.  I’m not taking this journey to raise any awareness of anything,  but rather to raise my own awareness of the Divine in the world in general real and my life and ministry in particular.

As I near the end of this trip I will let the sights and sounds, the signs and portents,  percolate through my mind and spirit. What will emerge?  I don’t yet know, but I do know that it has been a time of renewal for me – body, mind and spirit.

Tonight finds me in Marina, California after 8 days of riding.  1 or 2 days more until I arrive at the Golden Gate Bridge.


Author: pastortoddhammond

I have been a parish minister nearly 30 years and have had the privilege of pastoring from Maine to California. I began serving the Agape Church of the Brethren in Fort Wayne, Indiana at the end of 2014.

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