Tag Archives: Racing with Jesus Ministries

Together

By Rev Don Rivers

Thanksgiving, a time where we collectively give thanks. Thanksgiving is one of the biggest holiday weekends that we enjoy. It is a time where we gather with one another and share about the year that has gone by. Sometimes we can get too busy in life and forget the simple joy of gathering together. I hope you can take the time to turn the phone off and just relax together. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

One of the things that we are reminded of this time of year is how busy we have been. How crazy our lives have gotten. How caught up in the rat race we have been. We get so involved in things that we forget about how much joy we get from just gathering together. I want to encourage you to make an effort to gather together, count your blessings and be thankful for the opportunities we have.

I was invited to participate this year in the NEAR Hall of Fame Banquet. NEAR stands for New England Antique (Auto) Racers, a place to remember where we come from and celebrate those who paved the way. One thing that struck me was the desire to be together. The stories, the comradery, remembering the days gone by, but also looking forward to continuing the pursuit of racing. This room was filled with history, the history of New England racing. It was an honor to be a part of this celebration.

Together the racers in New England have forged a reputation that extends beyond the region. Many have come here to race with the best. Many others have left here after cutting their teeth to go on and accomplish great things in Auto Racing. The tradition is alive and well. As I parked the pace car in the pits at The Dirt Track at Charlotte on Friday afternoon a young man approached me and asked about that New England Auto Racing tradition. He shared how much he had heard and was counting the days until he could take it in live, in person. He is planning his vacation around a trip north to see for himself. His eyes lit up when he heard that I had witnessed firsthand some of the driver’s he had only heard about. We talked and I gave him some ideas about what to see and where to go. He left with a spring in his step excited about the opportunity to travel north and experience New England Auto Racing.

We can lose sight of what we have. We need to protect against taking things for granted and not lose the art of celebrating what we have been a part of. We party a lot but too many times we push the envelope so far we have trouble remembering what we did. A true celebration is one we can remember when it is over. A celebration, a gathering together to spending time sharing the things we are passionate about, acknowledging where we have been, what we have been through and looking ahead to the days when we get back at it.

I enjoy a good picnic, nothing formal just some burgers and hotdogs, soda and salads, but the people make the difference. Taking time to catch up on each other’s lives. It is a time to show them you care for them and will be there if needed. It is a time to connect with the past and remember where you come from. I’ve had a few opportunities this summer to spread out the welcome mat, those are fun times.

I am concerned though about how many of us are so busy we can’t take the time to sit a spell and enjoy a meal together. I wonder if we have forgotten some of the truly blessed times we have just sitting down and sharing a meal together. Thanksgiving is one of those times, don’t let the world take it away from you.

The writer of Hebrews reminds us that meeting together and encouraging each other is valuable and necessary.

Hebrews 10:25, Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another–and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

The day is approaching when some of us will no longer be on this earth. We will look back on our lives and wonder what we missed. There are things in life that are important and should not be overlooked; spending time with each other is one of those things.

You won’t find many thinking they should have spent more time at the track or in the garage working on the car or at work. Many will look back and see the opportunities missed. The time wasted on things.

I encourage you not to be caught up in the trap of thinking of ourselves as more important than others. Getting caught in the trap of thinking we are doing important things and there will be time to get together later. We will soon look back alone and wonder where everyone went. God created us to live together. Our lives are not complete without others to compliment us. The team concept comes out of the family unit that God put in place. We need each other.

If we bypass these opportunities to gather together, we will soon find ourselves alone and without hope. That is not the way to live a full and blessed life. If you haven’t yet; stop and make it a priority to get together. Remember it doesn’t have to be formal or fancy. Being together is one of the most important and significant things we can do to make life more satisfying and fulfilling.

So put the phone down, turn the TV off, through some food on the grill or in the crockpot and spend some time together. 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.

ALONGSIDE

By Rev Don Rivers

As we begin a season of thanks I would like to direct our thoughts to the idea of giving thanks. We should give some thought to those who stand by us as we walk through life. I am thankful for my friend and wife, Lynda. She has helped me, nurtured me, supported me and loved me. Who is standing by your side? Let them know how much their support means to you and you are thankful to have them alongside. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

In racing we have a team surrounding us and when that team is working at its best, each member pulls their own weight. When one member becomes weak the other members can pick up the slack. However, that team will fail if the members refuse to give and take for the good of the team. Challenges in racing come and the team that is the most flexible has the best chance for overcoming those challenges.

In our lives we also face challenges. God did not intend for us to face them alone. He provides for each one of us a helpmate to walk by our side. I take great joy in helping a man and woman join together in Holy Marriage. The opportunity to help them navigate their relationship, build a family and make a home is one I take seriously. God created that provision and I am thankful for my helpmate.

Genesis 2:18ff, NLT; Then the Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper who is just right for him.”…

The Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep. While the man slept, the Lord God took out one of the man’s ribsand closed up the opening. Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib, and he brought her to the man.

“At last!” the man exclaimed.

“This one is bone from my bone,
    and flesh from my flesh!
She will be called ‘woman,’
    because she was taken from ‘man.’”

No one is immune to the challenges of life. We each have areas where we are weak. We all need held dealing with our weaknesses. One of my weakness is I struggle with is when things don’t follow the plan I have. Sometimes the way things are planned out and the way things happen don’t agree. I am analytical in nature and think things through in a logical order. That is good in some circumstances, but not well received in others. I don’t always see the big picture. Lynda helps me put things in perspective.

One of the great advantages to having someone standing by your side is that you have someone else to share the experience with. The hope is that one can pick the other up and vice-versa. Lynda and I have become such a team. We are thankful to the Lord for putting us together. When one of us starts to go in the wrong direction the other is there to guide them back. We remind each other not to get caught up in the trap that is set to snare us by the enemy.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-10; Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!

God has a way of doing things that at times at difficult to see. Having someone to stand by our side helps us to see the things we are blinded to. We can help each other find God’s way in our daily life. We can encourage each other to refocus on the things that are right and ignore the things that drag us down. We can encourage each other to find God’s way.

Isaiah said this…

ISAIAH 55:6-9; Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on him, and to our God, for he will freely pardon. “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.

Our thoughts and ways are not the thoughts and ways of God. We need to focus on what God wants us to do and what God wants us to think. I know from personal experience that this is not easy but, it is much easier when you have someone at alongside.

If you have that someone, let them know how thankful you are to have them at your side. If not, I would like to challenge you to find such a friend. It will help you maintain your focus where it should be, on God and His ways. When the trials and tribulations of life come, and they will, you will do well to have a friend that will stand beside you. We all need a friend to help you move in the right direction. I thank God for such a friend.

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.

Blessed

By Rev Don Rivers

Do we realize what we have? Think about the time we spend involved with racing. Think about the blessings we have to be at the track. How about the other blessings in life; family, friends, house and home? Do we realize the value of it? We are blessed. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ

Do we value the time we spend living life? We put a tremendous amount of effort into racing and preparing to run the race but do we stop to appreciate it? One of the dangers we face is looking ahead to the next event on the calendar and not appreciating this one, this moment, this place, these people, this day.

Psalm 118:24; (NIV), The Lord has done it this very day; let us rejoice today and be glad.

To realize the value of ten years: Ask a newly Divorced couple.
To realize the value of four years: Ask a graduate. 
To realize the value of one year: Ask a student who has failed a final exam.
To realize the value of one month: ask a mother who has given birth to a premature baby.
To realize the value of one week: ask an editor of a weekly newspaper.
To realize the value of one minute: ask a person who has missed a train, bus or plane.
To realize the value of one-second: ask a person who has survived an accident.
 

I was that person who missed being killed by a split second. I was at a stop sign in an intersection and heard a siren.  I noticed a police car with its lights on coming from my left. I proceed to pull through the intersection to clear it, getting out of the way I pull over into a driveway on the side of the road. What I didn’t see was the car the officer was chasing as it sped away from the officer. It swerved to miss the cars at the stop sign, passed between my car and those stopped, lost control, hit the side of the road, flew through the air, took out a bus stop enclosure, and rolled over several times before coming to rest on its roof. A split second and I would have been broad sided by that car. We need to realize how valuable the time is that we have.

Time is precious and does not stand still. There is no force we know of that can stop the march of time. We need to value every moment we have.


 
To realize the value of a friend or family member: LOSE ONE.


We need to stop procrastinating and looking down the road. We need to stop and cherish what has been given to us. How many of us are guilty of looking past today and wanting what tomorrow brings? When we do that we fail to see the blessings that we have right here, right now. We are condemned to look back and say what if…..

How much would change if we only took the time to realize what we have? How much more peace and joy would we have if we only took the time to appreciate each moment? Don’t get to the end of your life and wonder what would have happened if you did things differently. Through Jesus Christ we can secure our future so that we can have peace in each moment.

We all want to get somewhere in life. We all want to accomplish something. We all have our sights set on attaining things in the future.

One thing that we can secure now that will change our focus forever is securing our eternal destiny. Billy Graham asks the question; “How sure are you that if you died today you are of going to heaven.” Well, are you one hundred percent positive you will be in heaven if the call came today? You can be.

We all have issues; we haven’t lived a perfect life. We all have made choices that don’t honor God. We all like to think we are good but the fact remains we fall short.

Let me ask you; have you told more than 20 lies in your life? Have you ever taken something that belongs to someone else, even a little thing? Have you ever used God’s name in vain? Jesus said if you look at someone with lust in heart you have committed a sin, have you ever looked at someone with lust in your heart? Well when you look at things that way we are blaspheming lying thieves with lust in our hearts.

Scripture tells us

Romans 3:23, “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

But

Romans 5:8, “God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

Titus 3:5, “He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy.”

What do you think will happen when we stand before God? Scripture tells us if we are guilty of these things we will end up in hell. That is not where we want to be, eternally separated from God and His goodness. We can fix that, God made a provision through Jesus Christ.

Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Romans 10:9-10, “If you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.”

John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish, but have eternal life.”

Are we ready to accept the gift of eternal life that Jesus is offering, to secure our future that will allow us to be at peace?

We must acknowledge that we are a sinner in need of a Savior – this is to repent or turn away from sin. We must believe in our heart that God raised Jesus from the dead – this is to trust that Jesus paid the full penalty for our sins. We must confess Jesus as our Lord and our God – this is to surrender control of our life to Jesus. We then receive Jesus as our Savior forever – this is to accept that God has done for us and in us what He promised.

A Prayer for Salvation

“Lord Jesus, I know that I am a sinner and I do not deserve eternal life. But, I believe You died and rose from the grave to make me a new creation and to prepare me to dwell in your presence forever. Jesus, come into my life, take control of my life, forgive my sins and save me. I am now placing my trust in You alone for my salvation and I accept your free gift of eternal life. Amen”

Please share with us if you made a decision to accept the gift of life that God offers. We would welcome the opportunity to rejoice with you. 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.