When Conny Walker steadied her bike and prepared to take off for the 40-mile course at the Miracle Hill Challenge on June 6th, I couldn’t help but feel joy in my heart that she was even able to be there.
Just a few weeks earlier, in April, Conny had been in a cycling accident. She’s not exactly sure what happened, but it involved a car and an attempt by Conny to make a left-hand turn. She doesn’t remember much else because she suffered a concussion as a result of the accident. The paramedics had to look through Conny’s cell phone to find her husband’s contact information; she couldn’t remember his name or phone number. Frightened, bruised and hurting, Conny was taken to the hospital for examination. She was later released but needed weeks of therapy, rest and time to heal.
It wasn’t just physical healing Conny needed. She needed to overcome her fear of getting back on a bike and out on the roads. The word “challenge” took on a whole new meaning for her. She wrote on her Miracle Hill Challenge fundraising page, “Bike riding has always demanded a level of faith in my estimation, but until faith has to overcome fear, it has not really been truly tested.”
Little by little, Conny did re-gain her confidence as well as her physical strength. On May 24th, she wrote the following update:
“Today I rode 18 miles on the road – solo for the first time since my accident in April. At the outset, my derailer cable snapped and 3 dogs started chasing me, but I continued on trusting my God would see me through. At about mile 7 or 8, I had the opportunity to re-live the accident. A black car stopped at a stop sign on the left side of the road and wouldn’t “go”, waited until I had passed and then turned onto the road behind and passed me on the left. He left me plenty of space, and I was never in any danger, but I was shaking and crying and had to stop after he cleared the area, and the Lord lifted me, as He always does. My husband called just as I was stopped, and I was able to finish without an emergency pick-up.”
Overcoming that challenge was no small feat for Conny, but she was determined to trust God each step of the way and to get back into shape, if at all possible, for the upcoming 40-mile ride with Miracle Hill. Just a few days before the event, Conny and a friend rode 27 miles together. Her update that day said, “I am happy to report I am beginning to enjoy riding again. It is not just an obstacle to overcome, but a genuine pleasure.”
A Ride to Remember
Conny was indeed able to finish the 40-mile Miracle Hill Challenge course and even encouraged many other riders along the way. After the event she wrote, “I may look every bit as fit as before, but I assure you, I am relying on the hands of the Lord every step of the way. I have no doubt of who is in control.”
Thank you, Conny, for your inspiration and for reminding us how important it is to walk (or ride!) by faith and to trust God for the journey.
If you’d like to see photos of the 2015 Miracle Hill Challenge, click here. Miracle Hill is grateful to all of the 330 cyclists, runners and walkers who together made the event such a success and raised more than $190,000 to help homeless children and adults in the Upstate. Thank you!