Tag Archives: Racing with Jesus Ministries

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.

Sharing the Load, RWJM Blog 9.10.18

Life is full of challenges, stresses and strains. When we look around we can see the burdens written on the faces of those we pass by. But are we willing to help carry someone’s burden? Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Racing hasn’t always been this easy. Don’t laugh, it’s true. We have more information, technology, and equipment to get the job done. That will help us get the job done, right? Just because we have these things doesn’t mean it is easier, it just means it is different. I was sharing the other day about listening to Dale Inman, former crew chief for Petty Enterprises. He had titled the discussion, “It hasn’t always been this easy.”

He spoke of the days when you drove the actual race car to the track, sounds easy enough. Well how about when the track is in California and you are in North Carolina? Not only that but the seats have been removed for weight; you have a piece of plywood for a back seat and you shared the ride with all the tools, jack and spare parts. The motor under the hood is the race motor and you had to break it in for the first 500 miles to wear it in right. You don’t have the benefit of a speedometer which means you met with the local law enforcement types no short of 10 times each way. It hasn’t always been this easy!

There are difficulties around each turn. It would be great if all you had to concern yourself with was getting your car setup for the race, but that is just the last hurdle. The challenges to getting things together to race are more involved than you think. I was talking with a driver just last week who was trying to get things together to get to the track. He was only missing one piece, the motor. He wasn’t able to get it in time and missed the race. As it looks now his focus has shifted to next year. Today the biggest burden is having to depend on others to get the components together. Most things are not done “in house” anymore. We think we have it hard.

I am encouraged when I see teams rally to help other teams who face difficulties at the track. I know of several occasions when parts were lent or crewmembers worked on a competitor’s car to help them get ready in time. I remember watching an engine being carried and installed by several “helpers” when time and space would not allow a more conventional way to move it. Why, because we want to race. We want the opportunity to win out on the track, not in the garage. We want everyone to have a chance to race.

We also face difficult times in life. Difficulties have a way of finding us when we can least afford it. We think we are prepared but we find we are not. What is the right way to respond when we see someone going through a difficult time? Listen to what the Paul says in Galatians;

Galatians 6:2-3, Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. If you think you are too important to help someone, you are only fooling yourself. You are not that important.

When we help someone who is going through a tough time and we lend a hand we are obedient to God. We honor God when we sacrifice our time, resources and abilities to help someone in need. Have we reached out and helped someone? Are we aware of the needs of those around us? Take a look and see if there is something you can help with.

I wouldn’t be the man I am today if someone didn’t reach out to me in my time of need. His name is Steve and he was always willing to help in any way he could. He never asked for anything back, he only asked me to help when I have what someone else needs. His willingness to give and his attitude toward giving came right from God’s Word.

2 Corinthians 8:10-15; And here is my advice about what is best for you in this matter: Last year you were the first not only to give but also to have the desire to do so. Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it, according to your means. For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what he does not have.

Our desire is not that others might be relieved while you are hard pressed, but that there might be equality. At the present time your plenty will supply what they need, so that in turn their plenty will supply what you need. Then there will be equality, as it is written: “He who gathered much did not have too much, and he who gathered little did not have too little.”

There are many lessons for us to learn in these verses but for now we need to understand that some of us have a surplus while others have needs. We need to recognize the burdens of others and be willing to give freely. Remember it is the effort that matters not the size of the gift.

So let me ask you, are we sharing the load? Are we willing to carry someone’s burden? Are we willing to let go of our time, talents and possessions so that we might relieve the load of someone? I can tell you this, Christ was.

Christ left his throne in Heaven, set aside his attributes as God and became man. He came to dwell with us and serve us. He carried our burdens to the cross and nailed them there. We are forgiven because Christ came and took the burden of our sin. Paul reminds us that our attitude should be the same as Christ’s.

Look back at the first passage we read, if you think you are above helping someone you are a fool, you are not that important. Christ didn’t think of Himself too important to come and give His life for you.

Take a look around I think you might be able to find someone who has a burden or two. Give of yourself to help that person. When you do you honor God and reflect the goodness that should be found in each of us as Christians. When you think it is beneath you remember, you are just not that important.

Philippians 2:5-8; Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:
Who, being in very nature[ God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death— even death on a cross!

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.