For our ninth cross camp diary we hear from Drew Dillman. Dillman is the reigning Division 1 Men’s Collegiate National Champion, and was on the podium OVCX Grand Finale and Jingle Cross this season, and won at the Pan Am Continental Cyclocross Championship U23 race this year as well.
Tillman tells us how now, on his sixth season racing in Europe and away from home during the holidays, it’s the little things he’s focused on.
by Drew Dillman
This is my sixth year being in Europe for Christmas so I’ve somewhat gotten used to spending this special time with my USA teammates and coaches. It’s a fun time during the block we share together because of the unique Secret Santa gift exchange that has become a tradition. Geoff Proctor gave me the Christmas Day diary entry since I somewhat started the tradition when I bought all the guys underwear from the European dollar store as a junior. I’ve come to cherish these traditions and special times that often seem so small.
Over the past few weeks, even before this trip, I’ve come to realize the importance of the “little things” in life. God gives us life and we should cherish every second he gives us. Often I’ve come to Europe with a mindset focused on results, but this year I’ve come focused on racing hard and having fun rather than solely on results.
I’ve tried putting less pressure on myself so that after this block of racing I won’t be in a mental “bog” because I didn’t get the results I was shooting for. I think this has helped me to be more aware of these little things while I’m here.
On this trip I’ve already been taking note of little things such as spending time with new friends at a European Christmas festival, seeing the eagerness and excitement from the younger guys, the fun courses we get to race, the lecture on “teachable spirit” I’ve heard countless times from Proctor, the NetFlix series we’re all addicted to, the ridiculous conversations at the dinner table and, of course, the Secret Santa gift exchange.
Above all this, however, is the gift that God gave us on this Christmas morning. In Romans 6 the Bible says “the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” We are all sinners in need of a Savior and Jesus is that Savior. The Bible says to turn away from sin and believe in Jesus to forgive you and He will forgive you. This is the greatest gift I’ve ever had and it’s my hope and prayer that it’s yours as well.