Several years ago, I was a member of a well-known Christian motorcycle club.
Actually, it didn’t really view itself as a biker club as much as a group of ministry team members to the secular biker community. As a member I wore their colors proudly. But without going into the details, let me simply say that something changed and I felt that I could no longer in good conscience support this para-church and religious biker organization.
Now let’s fast-forward about twelve to fourteen years.
A couple weeks ago I went on a bike ride that brought several hundred bikers together from all around the province. It was an awesome two-day event that I thoroughly enjoyed, despite the deluge of rain on the second day that created for a very wet ride home. While there mingling with the crowd, I saw members of my former bike club, albeit members of a different chapter than the one I belonged to. As I watched them, suddenly it became very apparent again why I quit that biker club. Christian ministry? Hmm.
Not once did I observe them mingling with the other bikers. All I saw was them hanging around only with themselves. I remember thinking, how clique-ish of them! Whenever I saw those colors on that first day, they were only in the company of others wearing the same colors. “This is ministry to the secular biker community,” I asked myself? Christian ministry? Hmm.
A caveat is in order. I noticed that one member of this club did reach out to a non-member … me. Maybe he felt safe doing so, because on my biker vest there are a couple patches that clearly identify me as a Christian. There is also a small pin with the emblem of my former association with his club. Seeing it, he asked me about which chapter I belong to. I informed him that I’m no longer a member, as I no longer wear the colors. The pin, I said, was simply a memento of those days of yesteryear. On hearing that I was no longer a member, but still wearing the pin, he said, “We’ll have to see about getting the boys to remove that pin from you!” Wow! Feeling threatened, I told him he could offer to buy it from me, and I walked away. Christian ministry? Hmm.
Now I said that this happened on the first day, but what about the second day? The second day they were conspicuous by their complete and total absence. It was like they never existed at all. Where were they? Was there no one there who needed to hear the Gospel on that second day of this biker rally? Christian ministry? Hmm.
After the main programed events of the first day ended, many who planned to spend the night at the campsite, myself included, rode into the nearest town on a “beer run.” Whatever Christian bikers were left from this group, once the beer came out, they were gone. The thing is, nobody was obnoxious, rude, or perverted. Yes, a couple people probably had a little too much to drink, but everyone was well behaved. There wasn’t even any litter lying around, as everyone made a concerted effort to keep the place clean. But I guess the sight of beer was too much for some “Christians.” Christian ministry? Hmm.
That evening, after we set up our tents, there was an awesome time around a bonfire. Talk about relaxing. It was beautiful. I mingled with other bikers, who by now obviously knew of my Christian faith (or at least suspected it), shared a couple beers, a few jokes, and made myself approachable. Christian ministry? Hmm.
As I thought about my encounter with my former bike club, I tried to imagine myself as a non-believer, like many of those around me, and wondered if they perceived what I perceived of these “Christian” bikers. What did I perceive? I know this will sound harsh, but all I could think of at that time was, what a bunch of snobs! Why would anyone want what you’re selling? Christian ministry? Hmm.
And now I finally remembered why I quit that Christian biker club. Christian ministry? Hmm. If that’s what it’s all about, thanks, but no thanks.