Category Archives: Racing with Jesus Ministries

RELATING, RWJM Blog 11.12.18

As we enter the Holiday time of year we turn or focus to those around us, the relationships we have. For some this can be a stressful time as relationships are not what we would like them to be.  We have relationships with many, but how do we relate? As we take a look around, who do we have relationships with? Why? Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

You are at the racetrack and you need a part for your car, who do you go ask? You go to someone you know. You go to someone who you know will help you out. How do you know? You know because you have a relationship with them. They will help because you relate well to each other. If not, an excuse will be made or some other reason made. Among our racing community we relate well to each other and are willing to help one another more than other communities we are a part of. That is why we enjoy being together.

In our day to day lives we meet people and interact with them. Some we decide to get to know better. Others we choose not to pursue. Who we choose and why is an interesting process. Understanding the reasons we build relationships will help us relate better. Did you know that guys generally choose who to be friends with based on what others have? Let me explain.

If Joe has a truck and you don’t, you may choose to become friends with Joe because you may need a truck someday. Think about it, if you doubt it, go buy a truck and see how many friends you suddenly have.

That is not the only way we choose our friends. We have many different things that draw us to others. Stop for a moment and think about why you hang around with the people you do. Think about what attracts you to someone else.

Just like we have many people we have relationships with, there are many different kinds of relationships. Some are close and some are social. No matter the relationship there are a few things that are true about each one of them. Relationships are built on trust, communication, time, honesty and faith. The stronger these traits the closer the relationship.

Without these components relating to each other is difficult if not impossible. Close relationships only develop when we can relate to one another. We can pretend, but when times get difficult and they will, only relationships that are built on this solid foundation will be able to stand.

The keys to secure, close relationships come directly from our relationship with God through Jesus. The relationship that God desires to have with each one of us involves each of these. Let’s break it down a little.

Trust; it is difficult to be close with someone you cannot trust. Think about how difficult it would be to share your most intimate thoughts if you didn’t feel you could trust someone. You wouldn’t and the relationship would not be as close as it should be. Think about the relationships you have, are they trusting ones?

Communication is another vital component. How close can you be if you don’t talk with someone? Communication can also be done without talking, our body language can indicate our true feelings. Communicating with each other helps develop the trust required in any close relationship. It also helps us recognize each other, “that doesn’t sound like….”

Time is another necessity; time spent together and time spent thinking about one another. How much time have you spent on the relationships you are in? Sometimes we think others will understand our absence but it takes its toll. There is no substitute for being there.

Honesty is a given. No relationship stands a chance if honesty is absent. Trust is built on being trustworthy. We are trustworthy when we are honest with each other. When we are not honest we deceive not only the other person but ourselves. There is tremendous pressure on a relationship when it is built on lies.

When these components are present they produce faith. Faith we can depend on someone to fulfill their responsibilities in a relationship. When we relate in these ways it is a freeing feeling. We are at peace. It puts the finishing touches on what it means to be in a close personal relationship.

Let me transfer this to the personal relationship we need to have with God through Jesus. You see Jesus opened the door so that we could seek out God and have a close personal relationship with Him. God provided Jesus because He wants a close personal relationship with each of us.

Seek Him out by reading His word and getting to know Him. Spend some time talking with Him and asking Him some questions. You will find Him trustworthy and honest. You will find Him worthy of placing your faith in. I am reminded of the passage that Jesus spoke at the end of His sermon on the mount. He talked about two men who had heard His words. One chose to listen, one chose to ignore them. They lived their life and challenges came. One was able to put his trust and faith in God. The other had only himself to depend on. One was able to stand. The other life crumbled and crashed.

Matthew 7:24-27, “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

Who do we think we need to have a relationship with? Life is difficult at best. We cannot make it through alone. We need the companionship of others. God made us that way. Take some time and work on the relationships in your life. Make every effort to build them on the rock that is the teaching of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Desire to relate with trust, communication, time, honesty and faith. Learn how having these close relationships can make life worth living. Build a relationship with God today and all your relationships will benefit.

John 10:10, NLT, The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.

Until next time, remember God loves you and Jesus is Lord over Auto Racing! God Bless. Remember, that your prayerful support helps us continue this ministry. Thank You.

Racing With Jesus-Reflecting

The season is over for most of us. There are a few special events to run but for the most part our champions have been crowned. How did this season work out for you? Did you take time to enjoy all you have been blessed with? Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

One of the great things in racing is that we get to race. Not everyone gets a chance to do what they have a passion for. There are many that don’t have the opportunities we have been blessed with. Have you ever stopped and thanked God for all he has provided?

At this time of year the thought that comes to mind is how thankful we need to be for what we have been blessed with. We need only to look around and see others who do not have the opportunities to do what we do.

Reflecting on the time we spent at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park for the Sunoco World Series of Racing. The event, like many we serve, was full of many opportunities to touch the lives beyond the track. Allow me to share some of the “behind the scenes” happenings. One special opportunity was that we were able to get the teams and officials together to encourage a special friend of the Whelen Modified Tour as he recovers and deals with some medical challenges.

We also had a member of the modified community facing a difficult diagnosis without much hope on the horizon. We were able to come alongside, provide encouragement and lift them up in prayer.

We have been involved for some time with helping a member of the racing community secure new transportation. We were able to deliver the news that the resources have been secured to make the final payment. The van would be delivered debt free to him. We always need to remember that no matter how difficult things seem for us there are others who are dealing with more challenging days.

In addition to what is going on behind the scenes there are things happening right in front of our eyes. As many know the leadership at Thompson is in transition. This was the final weekend that many who make up the team at Thompson would be together. As you can imagine the challenge of pulling together the Sunoco World Series but add to that the weight of saying goodbye adds to the challenge. We were able to be there in a supporting and encouraging role to the staff.

As I looked over the line of Track Safety Workers assembled on the front stretch before the invocation each day my heart went out to them. As they stood proud, ready to serve there was someone missing. Earlier this year one of their own was taken home. Many of them shared how much his presence was missing. Even those who stand by to protect us need support and encouragement. We were able to stand alongside and hold them up.

We also get to do some cool stuff for others. In addition to the race weekend this was a significant weekend for several race families; McDermott, Gagner, Posocco and Palko. On Friday night I had the honor of officiating the wedding for Cam and Lauren, now Mr. and Mrs. McDermott. Following that up on Sunday night I officiated the union of Ryan and Kaitlyn, now Mr. and Mrs. Posocco. It is always a wonderful time to celebrate new beginnings and being a part of the milestones in the lives of those we serve in the racing community.

Speaking of milestones Friday, October 12 marked a significant day for Chace Bennett. If you recall three years ago we joined the “Race for Chace” to encourage Chace as he faced treatment for Leukemia. Chace is the son of Michael and Lindsey Bennett; Michael a Late-Model Champion at Stafford Motor Speedway. We have stood beside Michael and Lindsey along their journey with Chase. He is my Superhero! On Friday October 12, 2018 he had his last treatment. What an awesome milestone to celebrate.

These are just some snapshots of what our team was able to be a part of over World Series Weekend. There were many others and each day in each of our lives there are significant events that might seem to go unnoticed. One of the things that we cannot let escape our attention is that we are truly blessed to be able to go out and race. The freedom to do what we enjoy doing. I remind you not to take it for granted, give something back.

As Christians we have been blessed with a Lord and Savior. We are reminded of the love that God has for us and the provision he made for our salvation. Paul reminds us how we should live our lives.

Ephesians 5:1-2; Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

We should live a life of love, but what does that mean? It means we should have compassion in our hearts for those who are less fortunate. We should be kind and forgiving. We should be willing to make some sacrifices to help others out. We need to be willing to serve. To borrow from my wedding ceremony;

Ephesians 13:4-8a; niv; Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.

Let me encourage you to take this time to reflect on all that you have been blessed with. If you need to be reminded, take some time and serve those who are less fortunate. Make a sacrifice this harvest season and you will enjoy it more than you ever have before. Show others the love that God showed to you. Remember; but for the grace of God there go I.

Until next time, remember God loves you and Jesus is Lord over Auto Racing! God Bless. Remember, that your prayerful support helps us continue this ministry. Thank You.

BRAKING, RWJM Blog,

Have you ever felt like a gerbil running on a never-ending wheel? Many times life is a blur, moving at a speed that is difficult to keep up with. We find ourselves being swallowed up. STOP, put on the brakes, slow down. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Have you ever seen twelve hours go as fast as it does on race day? The hours turn into minutes, the minutes into seconds and before you know it the checkered flag has fallen and it’s time to pack up and head home. This is especially true when you are chasing the setup or you are trying to repair some damage. The next thing you hear is the call for your heat or feature. Where does the time go?

We experience similar events in our daily lives. We wake up, get going and before you know it, the day is over. Where does the time go? The Season just started and now it is in the books. Champions are being crowned and we start looking forward to next year. It hit me today at the track the other day when someone said, “see you next year.”

I look at the photos of my children and remember the times that went by all too quickly. Now with one married with two children and the other two out of the house with careers in New York City and Florida I find myself wondering if I spent enough time with them. I wonder if I have taught them the right way, the way of God.

It seems to me that we get caught up in things that seem important, we think they need to get done, but in hindsight they were not the most important. I received an important piece of advice from a good friend once, “If it’s going to matter in 300 years it’s alright to worry about, if it is not don’t waste the time worrying.”

We can be guilty of placing importance on things that are not truly important. We lose our sense of priorities. We worry about things that we do not need to worry about. We consume our time trying to change or influence things we cannot. We have an agenda and when it doesn’t go the way we want it to we worry about what will happen next. Jesus asked us a question:

Matthew 6:27, Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?

Do you know the answer? Sometimes we think we can change the events of tomorrow if we worry about them enough. We can’t. The answer, no one can. So why do we do it? We have trouble believing that God really has it all under control. We think He needs some help. STOP, put on the brakes, live the life God has planned for you.

God promises us that He will provide for our needs. He has it all under control. We need only to trust Him with all of our heart. Listen to the promise God shares with us through the Prophet Jeremiah,

 Jeremiah 29:11-13, For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

 There is too much life to live to be enslaved to the rat race. Try to avoid getting so busy with things that we forget about what God wants us to do. We can get so busy trying to survive we forget to take time to look around at what others are going through, what others need. God promises to provide what we need to survive. God wants us to focus on what others are going through and instead of focusing on ourselves.

If you have put that trust in yourself then you will be disappointed. Even if you accomplish everything you want you will still be missing something. It is God and God alone that can give you abundant life. Fulfillment in life comes only through Jesus Christ. No matter what we have, what we accomplish, what social standing we achieve, it will be incomplete without a saving knowledge of God through Jesus.

 Don’t get consumed by the pressure to get things done. The line of the song says, “Life’s too long to live like this.” Focus on what is truly important, on what will affect eternity. Focus on the things of God. Live in such a way as to be sensitive to the leading of God. Step off the gerbil’s wheel and stop running so fast that life is a blur, slow down and let things happen. Put on the brakes. Watch for where God is working and join Him there.

Psalm 118:24, This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.

 Until next time, remember God loves you and Jesus is Lord over Auto Racing! God Bless. Remember, that your prayerful support helps us continue this ministry. Thank You.