Scrape! Crunch! It happened again, and at the worst possible time.
I was on my bike, pedalling around the corner on to the bridge, and the chain had come off the front cog. As cars and trucks approached, I quickly discovered that the safety fence was for me a danger fence, trapping me on the road. I quickly walked my bike back around the corner and managed to get to safety before any B-Double truck squashed me.
The problem was that the mechanism that pushes the chain from one gear to the other had got out of alignment, allowing the chain to go past the cog. Instead of smooth, silent travel, you get a noise and then nothing.
Having a chain out of alignment on a bike is not a big problem. It is inconvenient and annoying and takes a few seconds to fix, leaving you with dirty fingers. Adjusting a cable solves the problem for good.
When your life is out of alignment, there is a much bigger problem.
Most people are familiar with the story of Adam and Eve. They were created perfect and placed in a beautiful garden. God told them they could eat any fruit except the fruit of one tree. The inevitable happened and they were tossed out of the garden. What happened later is shocking. Their eldest son Cain killed his younger brother Abel.
Perfection to murder in a generation, and all because people had come out of alignment with God’s purposes. We see the ongoing consequences of this everywhere we look in the world.
How do we get back into alignment with God? You can't fix the world, but you can fix you. Read the Bible and see how Jesus lived. Ask God to change your heart. Let God’s Spirit spark in you a desire for you to worship Him and obey Him. Join up with a group of believers, often called a church, to find out how other people follow Jesus.
Not as simple as adjusting a bike, but certainly worth the effort for a better life.