What Tools Do I Really Need to Follow Jesus?

Donald Miller

The other day I was in LA with a friend and he took me to his favorite taco shop. We were sitting there eating when I realized I’d actually been to the bike shop across the street, nearly five years before. I laughed as I told him I spent about a couple hundred dollars on stuff I didn’t need in that very shop.

I could remember it so clearly. I was heading out on a cross-country trek, riding from Los Angeles to Delaware and so I stopped and bought supplies at that very store. I bought special pumps, water bottles, velcro straps to hold my tool kit, bike mirrors and more. I wanted to be ready for anything.

By the time I got to Delaware, though, I didn’t have any of that stuff. It was all dead weight. In fact, none of the real pro riders carry around a bunch of gear. All I needed to cross the country was two spare tubes strapped to my handlebars with a cheap rubber band and a pump. No more, no less. I’ve not ridden with anything else since.

I wonder how much of the rest of life is like that? Do we really need an office and new computers and stationery to start a business? Do we need Bible software and endless seminary classes to start a church? Do we need to read a thousand books on marriage before we tie the knot?

Here’s a tough truth I’ve had to learn: I probably won’t know what I need till I’m already on the journey. Everybody’s journey is different and everybody is wired differently so what we each need will be different. But we won’t know until we get started.

For me, most preparation is just a delay tactic because I’m scared.

*Photo by Tim Quijano, Creative Commons

What if we just stepped into our journey slowly and figured out what resources we needed along the way? What if you started the church and picked up the Bible classes and counseling classes as you needed them? What if you started a business and printed your business cards or bought that new computer the day you realized they were necessary?

What if the first part of the journey was to just start pedaling?

If I’d had known that five years ago, I’d have saved a couple hundred bucks.

Anybody need a rear-view mirror that sticks out from the end of your handlebars? I found it works better just to turn my head. Also, a bike horn? I have two and don’t use either. And I’ve got a Hello Kitty water bottle if anybody needs that. Let me know.

Donald Miller

Donald Miller

Donald Miller is all about story. His new book Scary Close is available now. Order it here, today. Follow Don on Twitter (@donaldmiller). To read more of his posts on the Storyline Blog, click here.