Britain (MNN) — As he neared 50 years old, what started out as an idea to get
fit and drop some weight turned into something much bigger for hobby cyclist Michael
A director at
Biblica Inc., Fitch also has an obvious passion for getting the Gospel
out. Combining the two seemed a logical
step. On July 7, 2012, Michael Fitch and his brother-in-law Jim Bewick are
embarking on a bike ride.
As with most
everything else in his life, he doesn't go halfway. "We hope to
cycle the 900 miles from Lands End to John
O'Groats in about nine days—so that's about 100 miles a day," he says,
adding: "We're also hoping that as we take on this big physical challenge, we might be able to raise awareness of something that's close to our
hearts, as well."
pair plans to ride the length of Great Britain to help people grow in familiarity
with Biblica and raise some money for key projects.
the "Big Bike Hike," Fitch says the idea came to him as he studied obstacles to
the Gospel. First, there are the access
problems. Illiteracy prevents a majority of the world's population from being
able to read the Scriptures, so Biblica is working on making Bibles available
in digital and audio formats for the largest 30 languages.
also making the Bible accessible to over 50% of the world's population in their
heart language, in a format which can be widely accessed with ease including
the more than 70% who can't read and write.
Then, there are
language barriers. God's Word in the vernacular helps open doors, particularly
in places like China. One Million Bibles
for China aims to provide Bibles in contemporary Chinese for communities all
over the world.
there's the practical application. The Reach4Life
HIV prevention program run by Biblica and its partners has brought hope to tens of thousands of young people in
Africa, Asia and Europe.
The price tags of
projects like these seem daunting. Fitch
explains, "One Million Bibles for China, ultimately, that is a three-million dollar project; the digital campaign
and the oral campaign…that is part of
a four-and-a-half-million dollar project. The amount of money that we're hoping
to raise, from cycling the length of Great Britain, is just a small part. Hopefully,
as people make small steps, they might make bigger steps in due course."
How much money is he hoping to see by the end of the ride? "The amount of money that we're trying
to raise is very modest. We're looking to raise £25,000, which is about
$40,000." It's not so much the
numbers as it is converting inaction to action. He clarifies, "We're hoping that
people will come on and give us a little bit of support and a little bit if money.
Hopefully, that will start other people on a journey to think about maybe
investing in Scripture."
Pray safety for both Michael and Jim. There are long stretches of
the road that are very isolated. The
project itself will tax both men to the limits of their training
endurance. However, "We hope that
people will pray for doors to be open for us, and we hope that people will
consider giving something, no matter how small."
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