Friday, July 31, 2009

Mission Accomplished! 4 kids 400 miles for $16,000 for kids 8,000 miles away

From all of us!!
"I have finished the course: I have kept the faith." 2 timothy 4:7

...We Raised $16,000 for the children of the leper colony in Rajnandoan, India!! We did it!!

Can you say, miracle?! I can. On Saturday night, our last eve before the final ride into Mackinaw I needed to get away with my dad for a pep talk. I really believed that we could raise the monies needed for their vehicle but when would it happen--today or next year? These kids were depending on us. My dad shared wise words that have been passed down the line..."God is seldom early but He is never late, he told me." He encouraged me to ride the final miles with the HOPE that God had a special plan and said, "Barrett, God placed this passion in your heart, He will see you through no matter how long it takes."

Our contact from World Hope Intl. was scheduled to meet us at the bridge to welcome and congratulate us and that alone was something to look forward to on the ride in to Mackinaw City. But again, God had a different plan. Our contact, Ann O'Dell, fell ill in Haiti with food poisoning and was rushed to a hospital in Miami. We were informed she would not be greeting us. That was a huge disappointment.

On Sunday morning we woke to pouring rain and slick wet roads. Our spirits were damp. We had breakfast devotions and my dad read us a story from a WHI/HOPE for Children booklet, "The Road to Opportunity". It has stories about children for who World Hope Intl. has provided opportunities. The story told of the faith and strength one of the kids had to come from poverty to receive education and eventually achievement. When asked if we had any c0mments or words to share, Ben spoke up, "Read us another story." We would do anything to stall and stay off the wet roads. Meanwhile, my mom was in the camper blogging our stories and asking friends to pray for the rain to cease.

Mr. Bennett, our route guide, gave us our maps for the day and my dad shared his final words reminding us WHO we were riding for and how important it was to reach the goal. Then, I think it was my Uncle Jim (cook/s extraordainaire) who told us that there was a SURPRISE waiting for all of us in Mackinaw City. Even my dad was surprised.

As we mounted our bikes and headed out to the entrance of the camp, THE RAIN STOPPED AND STARTED TO MOVE OUT OF THE AREA! Again, God was not late.

We had a DRY and AWESOME ride through the tunnel of trees and stopped and played along the way because we had no clue what awaited us except Mackinaw City and maybe some family members who were going to surprise us. That would be fun.

We rode into the final stretch under I-75, made the left turn single file and then lined up behind the "chase vehicle" that was going to lead us to the base of the bridge and the fort park. We had already decided we were riding 4-WIDE and PROUD as can be that we made the goal. Now it felt like TOUR de FRANCE!

There was family waiting for us. The other vehicles and our moms were lined up cheering us into the final block!! We circled the block and pulled alongside the sag wagon to be congratulated. WE MADE IT.!!

As we got off our bikes, my Uncle Jim handed my dad a piece of paper with a phone number and said that we needed to call the number right away. We gathered in a circle to make the phone call. On the other end of the phone was Mr. Scott Drury from Alexandria VA, World Hope Intl. He congratulated us and shared with us how proud he was of our efforts and hard work. THEN HE HAD ONE MORE THING TO TELL US, the children were going to get their vehicle. Not only had we made the 400+ mile ride successfully, WE RAISED $16,000! We all let out a huge "whoop" and cheers then there were tears! We did it!

AGAIN, GOD was just in time!
From all of us!!
"I have finished the course: I have kept the faith." 2 timothy 4:7

I am just 15 years old but... my friends who came alongside to ride with me and you CAUGHT my passion! WE ALL DID IT!

What's next?! [AJ Bennett thinks we just won the Super Bowl!] We want to go to India to see the look on Dr. Devedas' and the children faces when they learn about their vehicle.

THANK YOU THANK YOU.....please keep checking our blog. We have great photos to share and more information! We are now waiting for the pledges to come in and the mail is still delivering donations! Your response was unbelievable. You can smile and know that four teenagers are very excited and pumped up that they could make a difference. Our faith is strengthened. Our lives are changed.

THANK YOU for all your prayers and financial support to make this happen. YOU ALL know who you are and you know that without YOU this would not have been possible. God uses people to make dreams come true. The children of Raj India have been praying as has Dr. Devedas and, THEIR prayers have been answered. OUR dream and passion has been fulfilled. The monies via pledges and donations are still coming in and being calculated at WHI. Barrett, Ben, AJ and Abby you have a passion?! I do. Wait and see what God can do with this 15 year old and friends coming next year....stay tuned.

Monday, July 27, 2009


WE MADE IT TO MACKINAW AND MET OUR RIDING GOAL! YEAH. We do want you to know that after church/devotions on Sunday morning the SUN came out and we biked in NO RAIN. Thank you God for a safe and dry finish through the tunnel of trees to Mackinaw City.





Sunday, July 26, 2009

Why we are Riding Across Michigan (RAM)?

This is why we are riding across Michigan? We want to replace this broken van, with a modern vehicle for leper orphans in India.

It is pouring rain but we are PUMPED AND FIRED UP.
Please pray for us we wanted to
tell you some more this morning but our blog keeps
disappearing so this is it for the
AM! Barrett.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Day 5 - Saturday - Amazing Feats by Ben "Mini McGruppen" Z Reporting in...

What Happened to Dr. Mills?

Update on Day 5 from Ben

I’m really not one to talk because well I like to do things in person but some things always pop up. Like day 3 our first chances to get great speed down some big big hills. Though the hills were hard to get up, they where worth going down. We have had many you could say highlights so far during our trip like one of my favorites last night. Kujo had taken us out for steak dinners. It turned out to be an “all you could” eat perch dinner! Yahoo! little did we know the sea gulls were also wanting a perch dinner. We had so much fun!! Thanks Kujo! Through out the trip we have gotten to know each other better and working with each other has been so much fun! And last but not least today has been a fun day and all with the effects of my blood sugar we figured out that I can become a duck, elephant and, a Mini McGruppen!

Backyard Pool Party for Moms (With a Kiddies' Pool Table)

Cucumber Open-face sandwiches
Clothesline Fruit with Thai Dye
Blueberry Cooler
Chilled Herbal Tea


Cucumber Open-face Sandwiches

Using a sharp knife, cut the cucumber into thin, but sturdy, pieces.

Clothesline Fruit with Thai Dye

Clothesline Fruit: Through wooden skewers, thread alternating, fresh pineapple mini chunks, watermelon mini chunks, and red and green grapes. Presentation: lay all the fruit wooden skewers, between two matching vases, as if a clothesline.

Thai Dye:
Mix 1 1/2 cups peanut butter (smooth or crunchy), Juice of one lemon or lime,
1/2 cup coconut milk, 3 Tablespoons water, 3 Tablespoons soy sauce, 1 Tablespoon
Ginger, 1 Tablespoon garlic powder.

Mix all ingredients, except the cilantro. Add 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro, just
before serving. Serve individual cups of the Thai Dye to each guest, for personalized dipping, with their clothesline fruit.

Blueberry Cooler

Blend 1 quart low-fat chilled buttermilk, 2 cups blueberries, and 1/2 cup natural honey in the blender. Place the glasses and drink, separately in the freezer for 30 minutes before serving. Add super cold drink to the freezer glasses, just before serving. Serve refreshing 6 - 8oz. Coolers, with spoons.

Chilled Herbal Tea

Bring 8 cups of water on stovetop, to a boil. Place 6 herbal individual tea bags in the water. Let steep for at least 30 minutes. Remove tea bags. Put the tea into a pitcher and place in refrigerator to cool. Serve cold with ice, for 6 people.

Day 4 - Riders on the Storm

Check out those hills!

Hey, this is AJ! I've really been enjoying the bike trip so far. Today we rode from Elberta to Elk Rapids (65 miles). We were excited for what was supposed to be a flat day- at least according to my dad and Mr. Mills. As we soon found out, we were in for a day full of hills. However, we made it through that section of the route. After our lunch break we enjoyed some fresh cherry and apple pie compliments of Mrs. Carol Kuesel and Ryan Kuesel from Holland who met us along the trail. We were caught riding in the rain for a while. It was all down hill from there and we had an easy last couple of miles. We arrived at our camp site at 4:30 and had a quick snack. Our motorcycle supporters, Teri, Kujo, and Mitch took us all out for "all you can eat perch" where we had some great times. But we will leave that funny story for Ben to write about! Thanks Guys for all the support and keep clicking and sharing with your friends about our cause.! We'll see how tomorrow goes. Thanks for checking in with us! AJ Our photos from the day are awesome but we can't get them to upload for some reason.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Day 3 - Ludington to Frankfort

Barrett Mills Ponders the Miles Ahead

Day Three - Plea for Support - Help us Help the Kids in India!
it’s Barrett and Abby again we have decided that we are the only people who will be writing this week because Ben and AJ are off at the park in town tonight. The day was wild in the morning there was fog and we couldn’t see jack and our faces were getting wet and it was very cold. Then after lunch the sun popped out and cooked off the fog and clouds creating another sunny day. So we had three very large hills to climb and the excitement was just building (not really) haha. The first hill wasn’t that hard although when Abby and I took a break half way up... I took a rest on top of a fire ant hill. Abby noticed that ants really do make you dance when they are in your pants.

The second hill, Ben says he did 50mph going down due to wind speed and tire pressure (I have no clue if that makes a difference?). Abby and I think… its possible? Now, on the way down the third hill, Abby and I were going around 47 mph when I looked at the speedometer. Then I thought, I better not look down again. We had one more hill to climb. Hill number three was probably the easiest.

We made a camp change and are now staying just outside of Frankfort instead of our original plans to stay in Platte River due to the fact that we were unable to get an addtl. campsite/s. However, everything worked out and we are having a great time. That was our day here on the trail. It is nice to have the company of Mitch Overway Terry Koetji and my Youth Pastor, Dave “Kujo” Kujowa accompanying us for the next two nights on motor cycles. Thanks for everyone’s support and prayers. p.s. Ben and AJ you get more lines if you help write!!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

RAM Ride Across Michigan Daily Itinerary

RAM Daily Itinerary

Day 1 Tuesday, July 21

Holland to Duck Lake

Day 2 Wednesday, July 22

Duck Lake to Ludington

Mason County Campground, 7609 Chauvez Rd. Site 8

Day 3 Thursday, July 23

Ludington to Frankfort

Platte River Campground, Empire Sleeping Bear National Shoreline

FYI Change of overnight location- Betsie River Campground
Incoming guests we had to change campgrounds. We are at Betsie River Campground, Alberta/So of Frankfort. See office for the "held site". :)

Day 4 Friday, July 24

Frankfort to Elk Rapids

Honcho Rest RV Resort, Cairn Hwy (Ames St.)
Location TBD – Call Tim for details on THURS- 616-510-5577

Day 5 Saturday, July 25
Elk Rapids to Petoskey
KOA, US Hwy 31

Day 6 Sunday, July 26
Petosky to Mackinac City
Mackinac Mill Creek Camping, US23 Lake Huron Waterfront

Day 7 Monday, July 27
Mackinac Island/Head 4 Home


Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Day Two - Ride Across Michigan - Ram - Cycling4 Hope

Read Fab Grand Rapids Newspaper article

Barrett and Abbey Reporting in on Day Two:

Hey, everyone this is Abby and Barrett, we are sitting in Micky D's. Today was a great day with a little rough start, my tire was bulged and we had to switch tires. Then while going on one of the bumpy roads my new tube exploded. So by mid morning I was on my third tube for the trip, hopefully I don't blow any more tubes. After riding all morning, we rode into Silver Lake for the afternoon. While Abby fixed her bike at the shop us boys ran around Silver Lake riding go-carts. That was fun. It rained some.

Ben and I quickly learned that AJ is a reckless driver and should never be given the keys to his mother's jeep! Once Abby's bike got fixed we rode on to Ludington where Abby and I pulled off to the side of the road and chased a deer, which we learned was quite fast (duh). So, we failed at catching the deer, her and I continued on riding. We had no clue where AJ and Ben took off to, because they broke rank and rode ahead, they still think this ride is tour de France. :) That’s all I guess ha-ha. There will be pictures or a slide show up soon, check them out :] Tomorrow AJ and Ben will post their stories. Thanks for reading and sharing your comments -- Abby and Barrett for all! Click Here and Donate Now!

Day One - Cycling4hope

Check back each day for an update! Pray for safety, crossing the finish line, and financial goal completion.
Holland Sentinel - Local Teens Go the Distance for Children in India

End of Day One

Send Off - Day One

Follow Cycling4hope on Twitter
Twitter 2

Friday, July 17, 2009

15 Year Old and Friends Bicycle State of Michigan to Raise Funds for Orphans

Barrett and friends on a God Sized Mission. Cycling 4 Hope!

Van breaks down nearly every day, on the way to school

Present van that needs to be replaced.

Barrett Mills and his friends have a huge passion to make a difference in other people’s lives. After hearing from his Dad (who visited the orphanage last year), about a children’s home in Rajnandgoan, India that was in need of a new vehicle for transportation, Barrett began to wonder how he could help to meet their need. They currently have an old 1961 Willy’s jeep that is breaking down almost every day. Repairs are costly and time consuming. The children need the van to safely travel to school every day.

While praying for an answer, God immediately gave him an idea. God told Barrett, “get on your bike and ride somewhere far and raise the money for these kids in India”. The school vehicle/van will cost $16,000 US dollars.

Together with his Dad, Barrett is organizing a bike ride to make a difference—Ride Across Michigan--RAM. On JULY 21, he will be leaving Holland, Michigan, along with three other riders, peddling 400 miles to Mackinaw City. This journey will test them physically and spiritually as they ride to raise the money for this leper colony orphanage. This will be a great time for devotions and sharing about Barrett's personal relationship with Jesus and His love for others. World Hope International—Hope for Children--- World Hope International will be partnering with us to manage the money and purchase the van for the orphanage.

Email for more information:

Would you join Barrett and his friends in PRAYER, because without it our goal is impossible! You can commit to praying for our whole riding team as we raise the funds and ride. Read cycling4hope blog daily, as we cycle for hope. This crazy idea Barrett has was born of God and only God can imagine what can really happen with your PRAYER support. It's a God sized mission. Please mark your calendars for JULY 21 – 26 and PRAY for our safety.

1 Timothy 4:12 "Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity."

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Road to "I Do"

R.S.V.P. -

A Free One Day Conference for Singles (Unattached or Attached) or Couples Dating, Courting or Engaged Who are Thinking about Marriage and Want Answers to Real Questions:
How do I bond to someone for a lifetime? What vital elements do I need in our relationship to experience lifelong emotional and spiritual intimacy in marriage? How will my present heart condition impact our future success as a married couple? Are their biblical guidelines that can tell me to stay in or get out of this relationship?

With Bob and Cheryl Moeller – Authors, Television and Radio Hosts, Married for 30 Years and Co-Founders of “For Better, For Worse, For Keeps Ministries”

Conference Emcee will be WMBI's Popular Michelle Strombeck

Location is Elmchurch, 343 S. York, Elmhurst, Illinois

Date and Time is Saturday, August 15, 2009 from 8:30 Am to 3:30 Pm

Free Admission – To attend all participants must RSVP by August 12, 2009 at (An offering will be taken at the conference)
8:30 Am Registration and Doors Open
9:00 Am 1st Session: The Mystery of Bonding
10:15 Am Coffee and Break
10:45 Am 2nd Session: The Importance of Knowing your Heart Condition
11:45 Am Lunch – on your own at local area restaurants
1:15 Pm 3rd Session: Secrets of Lifetime Emotional Intimacy & Commitment
2:15 Pm Coffee and Break
2:30 Pm 4th Session: Am I Dating a Boaz or a Bozo?
3:15 Pm Question and Answer Session with Bob and Cheryl
3:30 Pm Conference Ends

Directions: Elmchurch Phone: 630.832.9100

R.S.V.P. -

Sponsored by For Better For Worse For Keeps Ministries and Total Living Network

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Chicago Homeschool Expo

Chicago Homeschool Expo is new and coming to Chicago August 7-8, 2009. Look for our billboards at I-355 @ Lake Street and I-290 @ 1st Avenue. Register today!

The expo is affordable. If you want free entrance, they are looking for volunteers. Kids are welcome.

There are hundreds of exhibits in the exhibit hall, including two featuring our marriage ministry and my homeschool curriculum.

Bob and I will be doing four workshops, that you don't want to miss.

1. Homeschool Your Preschooler on $1 a Day (Cheryl Moeller/Author, Homeschool Mom of 6) – Are you planning on homeschooling your preschooler, but can’t afford all the curriculum you picked out? Or perhaps, you already have your homeschool curriculum, but still need additional ideas and supplemental materials? Who doesn’t need help these days with the rising costs that impact a family’s budget? This is your key to a “Do-it-Yourself” preschool homeschool workshop, where you’ll be given you the tools to frugally homeschool your preschooler on $1 a day. All ideas are tried and tested in the trenches with homeschool mom of 6, conference speaker and author Cheryl Moeller, M.A.R.

2. Six Steps to Connecting with the Heart of Your Child (Bob and Cheryl Moeller) All children desire to have a deep and life-long heart connection with their parents. Parents share this same desire to be connected to the hearts of the their children. Yet, for this heart connection to take place it requires a deliberate effort, focus and caring on the part of parents. Bob and Cheryl Moeller, homeschool parents of six children, will share with you six practical steps to use with your homeschool children to stay connected to their hearts on a day to day basis. They will help you understand the dynamics of the heart as God created it to work; what locks and unlocks a child’s heart; and how to speak into the heart of our kids giving them the love, security and sense of belonging they so desperately desire.

3. Teach Your Children 12 Crucial Life Lessons to Avoid Making Huge Mistakes (Dr. Bob Moeller) Nothing is learned by quitting, more people are counting are on than you realize, never burn bridges behind you, are some of the 12 Valuable Life Lessons that you’ll want to know to teach your children. These practical, transferable concepts can guide your children to make wise, and life-giving choices each day. From truths learned from personal experience, as a husband of 30 years, homeschool dad of 6, pastor, author and TV host, Dr. Bob Moeller will challenge you to instill in your children 12 disaster busters.

4. 10 Reasons Why Loving Your Spouse is the Ultimate Homeschool Curriculum (Dr. Bob Moeller) Discover 10 Reasons why making your marriage and spouse the priority before your children and homeschool, is so vital. By learning and living this valuable home-life curriculcum, children will be set on a course to make them more productive, successful and well adjusted in their future lives and homes. Loving your spouse is an important life lesson children need to learn and see modeled, to ensure a healthy future. Dr. Bob Moeller and Cheryl Moeller, B.S., M.A.R., For Better For Worse For Keeps Ministries, will show and tell you why and how.