Tag Archives: Racing with Jesus Ministries

RWJM Blog 8.3.18

Sometimes in life we get to a place where things just seem disorganized. We try but we just don’t seem to be able to get our hands around things. We struggle to find our focus. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

I was talking to a crew chief the other day about the way his car was handling and he shared with me that they came to the track with a new setup and have been trying to dial it in. They were not having much success but were committed to work through it. I was amazed when he said they couldn’t even go as fast as the “old” setup. I was confused.

If you try something and it doesn’t work why not go back to what you know works?  The effort and time spent trying to make something work on race day seems like a frustrating endeavor. It only teaches you what you can’t do. Sometimes we lose focus. Take a step back and rethink the reason why you came to the track that day, to race. Not only to race but to win!

I understand you have to try new things and when you try, you may find something out, but that type of activity is for a test session, not race day. There is a time and place for every activity and we need to be aware of the situation and focus on the desired result. Why are we here?

Losing focus applies to every aspect of our lives. We need to remind ourselves what is it that we are doing and focus on the activities that reflect that. Sometimes we get distracted from our mission. We need to take a step back and refocus.

Hebrews 2:1 – We must pay more careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away.  

Have you ever noticed that what you focus on is likely to become where you end up? Daryl Shoemaker tells us about how he learned this lesson. On a recent summer vacation I enjoyed a round of golf with, for the purpose of this story, an unnamed family member.  While standing by a tee box, we admired all of the beautiful homes and their immaculately landscaped patios that backed right onto the left side of the fairway.  My golf partner indicated that the home owners complained at length about golf balls hitting their homes.  However, it had not been a problem for him as he followed the sage golfing advice – don’t focus on the home, tree or water, but instead focus on the place where you want your shot to land.  That makes sense.  You always hear about how pro athletes are successful in part because they are able to visualize the play.  He went on to effectively demonstrate this principle, as after 5 minutes of looking at the homes, he managed to hit a 250 yard shot right into the back of the home furthest from the fairway.

Actions follow thoughts.  It is not that we should ignore the challenges that face us.  However, it is a question of focus.  We need to remember the situation we are in. Remind ourselves of the right focus. When our focus is correct, the obstacles remain in our periphery, the risks become secondary. While we focus on our purpose the path may not seem so long.  While we focus on the reward the cost may seem small.

What is it that we need to be focused on? We need to remind ourselves that we are to be about the Lord’s work. Don’t let things distract you from what honors God. I refer back to the writer of Proverbs when I get things out of focus on my life.

 Proverbs 3:5-6; Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.

Are we a little out of focus? Take a step back and look at where we are expending energy. Ask ourself if we are moving in the direction that God wants us to. Make the necessary adjustment to get things back on track.

BACK ON TRACK

Talking of getting things back on track, we have some work to do to get Rapid Rick back on track. Many of you know Rick Raducha, he’s the guy with the ever present smile and rolls around the track in a wheel chair. He has been a fixture at tracks up and down the east coast for many years. He has helped many racers find sponsorship money to race. He is a tremendous encouragement to more people than he realizes.

I was talking with Grandpa Blewett this week and he impressed upon me that we need to get Rick into the new van so he is taking it upon himself to spearhead the drive. He shared how much seeing Rick’s smile changes his outlook. “Look that guy smile!” Grandpa feels we, as a racing family, can step up and help. If you look in last week’s edition of Area Auto you will see a picture of Grandpa and Rick. Grandpa has set up a fund to receive donations for the special equipment that the van needs to be equipped with so Rick can drive it. He is committed to get this done and he would like our help.

Rick has a condition best described as brittle bone disease, they have a medical term for it and if you ask Rick he’ll share it with you. Rick has accomplished a world record, most broken bones and still living. I remember the directions he gave me when we headed out on a road trip with the late Howie Hodge. Don’t resuscitate! He explained it would be like doing CPR on a bag of pretzels. I’d do more damage than good. Rick and I have taken a couple road trips together and I have seen firsthand the challenges he faces in just everyday living. He does it all with a smile. Think for a moment of not being able to do the simple things you take for granted every day without help. Now take them on the road.

Getting Rick in a passenger car is no easy task, I have some experience trying. Rick has a bump on his head to prove it. Cradle gently, don’t squeeze too hard, watch his head, and don’t drop him. I get him in and he jokes that he needs a booster seat to see out the window. Always a smile and a laugh. With the help of Dan and Gary we made the trip to Bristol and Rick was able to cross that off his bucket list.

Having the freedom to travel is one of the greatest pleasures we can enjoy. Let’s give that back to Rick. Join with Grandpa Blewett and put this over the top! Make checks payable to Rick Raducha and mail them to John Blewett Sr., 246 Herbertsville Road, Howell, NJ 07731. Thank You in Advance.

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.

Unscheduled Time, RWJM Blog, 6.9.18

We are creatures of schedule. It is rare that we have unscheduled time in our days. Many times we need it and should provide for it but we are unable to sit still long enough to enjoy it. Technology does not help. Being online and available at a moment’s notice doesn’t help. We need to listen to the Holy Spirit as he prompts us to take a break for some unscheduled time. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

I think back to the time of year when the new schedules come out. We anticipate what the new season will bring. What new tracks are on the horizon? We sort out how each will fit into our schedule. We fill the upcoming racing season with opportunities. Very rarely do we schedule down time.

I have followed along the journeys of many friends on social media as they share their vacation exploits. I see this place and that, here and there, but never nowhere. Somehow, somewhere, someway, unscheduled time is not in our plans. Most times we need a vacation from our vacation.

This subject is on my mind because I have struggled with leaving room in my schedule for God. I get so busy that there isn’t room for Him. Not that I am not serving Him and ministering in His name but that I have Him scheduled into a box of time. Here you go God, here is your time to speak to me, what’s up. Okay on to the next scheduled item.

I am afraid I have gotten so busy that I have squeezed God out. Not as a part of my life; I serve Him every day, but as a part of my scheduling. Maybe you are going through a similar time. God will not force His way in. He will wait until we realize that we haven’t seen His hand working in our lives lately.

The question of the day is, how are we allowing God to adjust our schedule for His glory? Are we even considering Him wanting to have input? Let me be candid, I have been going through a very difficult struggle for several months trying to figure out which direction God wants me to move.

This is not unlike a racer deciding which races to run. We try our best with the information we have to make decisions that will give us the best opportunity to move forward. Very rarely do we decide to do something that will take us backward or slow us down. We are a forward moving people. To the front!

This past weekend God got my attention. I had it all planned. I would head to Memphis to cover the K&N race. Lynda would join me as we planned on visiting some friends in Western Tennessee. We planned to bring our popup camper and stay on their farm. Sounds like a good plan, right? I thought so.

I put in place all the coverage needed to cover my usual responsibilities. Rev. Dan and Todd Heft would cover the Whelen Modified Tour at Seekonk. Rev. Jerry Jones would cover preaching for me at Mount Carmel Christian Church. Lynda shared with our Daughter that we would need to adjust our schedule in watching the grandkids. Looks like we have the bases covered, pack up the camper, let’s go!

We needed to take time and listen to God. You see as the trip approached there wasn’t a peace in our hearts about going. Not that we weren’t planning to do good things, but that God had other plans that would be more beneficial to us. This can be the most difficult part of walking with God, when he wants you to move in a different direction than the one you have plans in place to go.

Proverbs 3:5-6, (NLT), Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.

Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.

Most of the plan was good, God confirmed that. The part that had to change was our location. As Lynda and I became aware that God had a different plan for us we made adjustments. You know it is God when people are ready and waiting to step in and serve in your place.

I was ready to make the trip without Lynda as care for our grandchildren made her joining me difficult. God then started on me and helped me know He had a replacement available to cover Memphis. A chaplain friend who lived in Nashville and had over 12 years of experience working with NASCAR was available and willing to cover the race. In some way he needed to be there and I didn’t.

Okay I’m not going to Memphis, all my responsibilities are covered, what am I going to do? Unscheduled time, something I rarely have, let alone need. I was given the opportunity to step back and evaluate how important my presence really is. Sometimes we think we are more important than we really are.

God helped me see this past weekend that I need to be on His schedule. I need to follow His plan. If I am not I will miss His presence in my life. I am not the one who makes the world go round, He is. I must admit this past weekend wasn’t comfortable for me. I’m much more comfortable when I am on a mission. Taking a step back with some unscheduled time left my mind contemplating a few things. God got my attention!

Fight the urge to fill every moment of your life with something. Fight the urge to be accessible twenty four-seven. Instead let God help you learn how to follow Him. Let him make the adjustments in your life that will lead to a closer relationship with him. Let those lessons help you live life better.

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.

Laying Down Our Lives, RWJM Blog, 5.26.18

Our country is built on the foundation of freedom and the willingness to sacrifice for the common good. God established at the foundation of creation that Christ would give His life for our freedom. This weekend is Memorial Day, when we remember those who gave their lives for our freedom. Let’s take a moment and reflect on our lives; are we willing to lay down our lives for the benefit of someone else? Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Every day in every corner of the world men and women have set their lives aside to protect the freedoms that we enjoy. They have put their families on hold. They have missed birthdays, weddings, births and deaths. Why, to serve us. Many have laid down their life for us. They defended our right to freedom;  defended our right to go to the track of our choice and enjoy racing; defended our right to say whatever we want; defended our right to protest; defended our right to vote and have a say in how this country is run. America is still the greatest nation on the earth because of these men and women. People from around the world still want to come here because of the freedoms we enjoy. We need to appreciate what we have been given and recognize those who sacrifice in service to maintain it. Don’t be guilty of complacency; let them know you are thankful for their sacrifice.

Galatians 5:13-14, (NLT), For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love. For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

One of the basic concepts of life is give and take. Life is much more rewarding and fulfilling when we learn the balance of giving and taking. When our life seems out of control, it can be traced to giving and taking being out of balance. We are either taking too much or giving too much. You can decide which one you are prone to do.

Think about it in racing terms, when we have a race with some give and take the racing is better. When someone is out there and all they’re doing is taking, the racing gets heated and contentious. The other drivers are frustrated and the results are not the best. Conversely, when all someone does is pull over and let everyone pass the racing isn’t very exciting either. When there is a balance there is better racing.

The concept of giving one’s life for the benefit of others is not new. This is the greatest gift someone can give. The problem arises when we take it for granted. When we do not remember to acknowledge that sacrifice we become the takers. We instead should be motivated to give because of the opportunity we have been received.

Think about times in your life when you have been given something, something of great value. If your first feeling is that you don’t deserve it; that is good. Then if you are motivated to give back, that is great. It is when we have the attitude that we deserved it that we falter. Compassion has its roots in our willingness to give when we have been provided for.

Our country is based on the right response to the gift of freedom provided by those who have laid down their lives for us. If we respond with an attitude that we deserve this we are wrong. The right response is to express a deep appreciation to those who have given so much. This appreciation should motivate us to give as we have been given to.

God gave us the opportunity to overcome our shortcomings. He loved us and didn’t want us to live our lives in vain, separated from His guidance and wisdom. He provided a way for us to receive forgiveness. Out of love for us, He provided Jesus.

John 3:16-18, “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. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

As you read these verses you can see how the proper response is one of believing and accepting this gift. Without a proper response to the gift we have been given we condemn ourselves to living life and eternity separated from God.

I would encourage you to develop the right spirit in your heart. Recognize the gift of freedom we have been given by those who have laid down their lives for us. Go out this weekend and drive through a cemetery, look at the American Flags that adorn the graves of the veterans who have paid the ultimate price. Take a moment to say thank you and pray for the family that lost this person. Let them know that you appreciate their sacrifice.

Likewise, remember the gift of forgiveness that has been provided to us by God, and say thank you to Him. Let Him know how much you appreciate His sacrifice for our freedom from the consequences of sin.

After we have said our thanks, commit to live a life that demonstrates that appreciation. Live like you have been given a tremendous gift, the gift of freedom to live.

1Peter 3:8-12,  Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble.  Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.  For,

   “Whoever would love life

    and see good days

  must keep his tongue from evil

    and his lips from deceitful speech.

    He must turn from evil and do good;

    he must seek peace and pursue it.

   For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous

    and his ears are attentive to their prayer,

  but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”

 

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.