And I stopped Biking

I started riding bicycles in my primary school days. I learned the hard way (so many falls and bruises) but perfected the art of riding. I was a local champion who could do anything on the bikes; I performed many stunts and encouraged and inspired others. In those days, at full speed, while still cycling, I could remove my hands from the handles and even stand upright on the Bike. That was what we used to call "Garo," I believe for those that rode bikes in Western Nigeria, those good old days can connect with that slang. For me, then, Biking was a vital part of my time. I looked forward to my next ride after school hours even though I did not have a personal bike; I saved enough money to rent one at the expense of a meal. And for those privileged to have personal Bikes, we flocked around them to have the chance to ride occasionally. I am familiar with most brands, and my preferred make was Raleigh; oh, how I loved the Raleigh.

However, when I got to my teenage years, I lost interest in Biking, something else had caught my fancy, and I was less motivated to ride a bicycle. One of the things I could recollect that led to this was that my family relocated to a new environment, and I was far from my bike hangouts. By my second year in secondary school, I started moving with a new set of friends who were not motivated by Biking. I became complacent with my favourite pastime and eventually stopped Biking. It will remain so until over 30 years later when I moved to Calgary. I arrived early in the summer, and there were many outdoor activities. I bought bikes for my kids and decided to join the fun by getting one for myself; unfortunately, I couldn't get a Raleigh. I jumped on the Bike like old times; alas, I got more than I bargained for. I had lost my skills, unbalanced even with my two hands on the bicycle. It will be suicidal for me to try "Garo." I knew I had the ability within me, but my body did not respond as it should. I fell a couple of times, but I gradually grew into it again, and today, I am enjoying my Biking again.

You will ask me why I am sharing this. At a recent Sunday School class in Church, the day's topic was complacency. As I reflected on this teaching, many things came to mind about my Christian life and the attitude of many believers today, particularly those of us that migrated from our country of birth to the Western world. The foundation of faith laid for us because of our teachings as young believers has in no small way contributed to our standing today as a believer.

However, I have observed that complacency has set in; we have lost the vibrancy, and we are no longer able to encourage or inspire others. From my interaction with people and my personal experience, the two common factors are the quest for social integration and a perceived feeling that there is a need for reorientation in our worship approach. While I agree with some of these sentiments, I asked myself, "AT WHAT COST"?

If I link this back to my biking story, I see a lot of similarities. I have highlighted some phrases and words in the above paragraphs to draw our attention to how this connects to us spiritually. For example, do you still inspire others in the way of The Lord? Has what used to be a vital part of your day and time no longer a regular feature? Has something else caught our fancy? Are you less motivated by the things of The Lord? Are you satisfied with your current level, and do you think there is no need to put in more? Let me remind you of the writing of Apostle Paul as recorded in the book of Philippians below:

That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Let us, therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in anything ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you. Nevertheless, whereto we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us mind the same thing. (Philippians 3:10-16 KJV)

When I relocated from Nigeria some 17 years ago, I found myself in this realm of complacency, so I am speaking from personal experience. It took me a while to have a reality check; I understood how unbalanced I was and got myself back on track. And I am challenged to write about this not because I am far above board on this issue; but far from it. I could picture myself in some pictures painted in that Sunday School class. I am sharing this because we can all learn from it. As I picked up my Bike again to ride after a long time out, we can all pick ourselves up again to reinvigorate our spiritual life. Our location may change, but God has not changed.

Let me end by saying that the danger of complacency transcends beyond us; it goes on to our children. If we do not lay a good foundation for them today, they may be unable to withstand the wickedness presented to them tomorrow.

I will end with the word of the Lord to the Church in Ephesus as recorded in the book of Revelations.

Unto the angel of the Church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks; I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars: And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name's sake hast laboured, and hast not fainted. Nevertheless, I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent. (Revelation 2:1-5 KJV)

For someone out there, I say unto you, its time to get on your "bike" again............


Pastor Toks.G.Balogun


Omodele - April 10th, 2023 at 9:06pm


Thank you, Sir, for sharing this.

In like manner, during the raining season (as we call it in that part of the world), you might not need so much effort to have sufficient water for your crops for optimum growth. In contrast, you'll require alot of effort and investment, such as irrigation, to bring about a similar condition during the dry season.

God will help us to put in the work. Once again, thank you, Sir, for this wonderful piece.

Ajoke Banire - April 10th, 2023 at 9:36pm

Very well written story sir.

My thoughts's time to get on my "bike"again!!!!

Sis Sabainah - April 11th, 2023 at 9:52pm

Thank you sir for sharing

I really appreciate sir

Gbenga - April 14th, 2023 at 11:50am

Hmmmm... This is a word in season.

Thank you for sharing sir.

My take home:

* Shake off complacency (get on your bike again)

* Our location has changed but God has not changed.

‘Lekan - April 17th, 2023 at 2:35pm

Thanks 🙏 for sharing. This is a great reminder of how easily we can become complacent in our faith. It's a call to action for us to get back on track and press towards the mark!