A boy and his bike.
Imagine how endearing a young man can be when he stands straight up and exclaims “I’m gonna make the world a better place! Just me and my bike!” Only this time, our heroic little buggar did make the world a better place with his bike…
Born to ride, he was racing bikes professionally by the time he was 16 years old. An obvious contender, he was heir to the cycling throne when at 25, he learns he has cancer. The diagnosis was testicular cancer, the most common cancer in men aged 15-35. If detected early, its cure rate is a promising 90%.
Like most young, healthy men, our hero ignored the warning signs, and never imagined the seriousness of his condition. Going untreated, his cancer had spread to his lungs and brain. It looked like the end of the road for our boy and for his bike.
Then, with a combination of physical conditioning and a strong support system his spirit took over. He declared himself “not a cancer victim but a cancer survivor”, determined on living in God’s light. He took an active role in educating himself about his disease and the treatment. Armed with Faith, knowledge and confidence in medicine, he underwent aggressive treatment and beat the disease.
During treatment, before his recovery, before he even knew his own fate, he created a nonprofit organization aimed at educating the general public and helping cancer patients worldwide. This marked the beginning of Lance Armstrong’s life as a leader for cancer survivors and a world representative for the cancer community.
What followed was an unprecedented road to ultimate success. Lance’s complete recovery from cancer seemed miraculous enough, actually returning to racing felt unfathomable. His professional comeback, however, got off to a rocky start. Early season racing in 1998 nearly ended his career again when, in a cold and miserable Paris-Nice race, he pulled to the side of the road and quit. Many thought that was the last day on the bike for Lance Armstrong.
1999 came with a specific goal- The Tour de France. When Lance went to the line at the prologue of the Tour, it was already a victory, both for him and cancer survivors everywhere.
He rode on to win his first Tour victory with a stunning mixture of power, aggressiveness, and team strategy. It was now official: Lance was an international hero.
But our boy and his bike didn’t stop there.
He has added five more Tour de France titles to his list, has been awarded virtually every sports honor there is, and has become a symbol of hope and inspiration. He also continues to be a leader and activist on behalf of cancer survivors around the world.
The Lance Armstrong Foundation has become among the most influential organizations of its kind and today provides practical information and tools people need to battle cancer and live strong through education, advocacy, public health programs, and research grants.
When Lance retires is still an open question, but one thing remains certain. No matter what his path, he will travel it with the sure knowledge that every day is precious and that every step matters.
A boy, a bike, a dream. Lance never imagined the road blocks along the race to fulfill his most cherished dream. Little did he know along with cycling trophies came medical miracles and humanitarian awards, all in direct proportion to the pain and suffering he endured.
Lance’s peak continues to rise with each breath from the lungs of cancer survivors worldwide. We all need to reach for the sky in our own lives and fulfill God’s mission for each of us.
How do we achieve this? By waking-up with God and walking with Him throughout the day!
Start each day with a prayer, glow through breakfast and drive to work as Jesus would- Safely and intelligently! Honor your employer by working diligently and by being an example driven by Faith. Rejoice with your family after a challenging day or gather in worship through small groups, and end each day in prayer knowing you are truly blessed by a greater God.
This is a formula you will be wise to adopt sooner rather than later. Why wait for a traumatic event such as cancer before we too take a leap of Faith and jump into God’s almighty light?
The miracle is not that Lance Armstrong beat cancer or that he won the Tour de France 6 times in a row. The miracle is that he had the courage to get in his bike and push the envelope. The miracle is that he had the courage to fight the deadly disease. “Let us run with perseverence the race marked out for us.” (Heb 12:1)
The miracle is that he had the courage to begin.
We thank you for leading us to live challenging lives
Following in your footsteps each and every day
Spreading your love, your forgiveness, your strength.
Lord we pray you will continue to guide us
As we walk the path you have drawn for our lives,
And be leaders ourselves to those in need.
Father we want to serve you and share the great news
That your second coming is near
And that your heart awaits a simple prayer
When anyone can receive you as their savior.
May your light cut through the fog all around us
And shine bright upon us, upon our friends,
Our families and all those in need.
God we love you and thank you for all that surrounds us!
This message was written by Daniel St.Pierre