SETTLE OUT OF
by Rev. Don Rivers
How do we go about settling disputes? Are
we honest with ourselves? Do we seek to settle things or leave them in
someone elseís hands? Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus
Taking a look back we review what we have already discussed in this
Matthew 5:21-26, "You have heard that it was said to the
people long ago, `Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to
judgment.' But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be
subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to his brother, `Raca, ' is
answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, `You fool!' will be in
danger of the fire of hell.
"Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there
remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there
in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come
and offer your gift.
"Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to
court. Do it while you are still with him on the way, or he may hand you
over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you
may be thrown into prison. I tell you the truth, you will not get out until
you have paid the last penny.
We first covered harsh words and how God views our use of them.
When we tear someone down with words we kill their spirit. We devalue them.
God values each one of us the same. In Godís eyes we all are the same. When
we do not value what God values we elevate ourselves above Him. We do not
have that right.
Jesus tells us that when we do not show others the same value that
God does we, in effect, murder them, kill their spirit. Jesus says we do not
have the right to do that.
We then took a look into our hearts and discussed the motivation
behind our actions. God requires that our heart is motivated by the right
things or the offering we bring is not acceptable. We need to reconcile
It can be difficult to reconcile things, but follow me on this. God
doesnít ask us to change the heart of someone else, He asks us to change our
heart. He asks us to recognize that we have harbored sin in our heart. He
asks us to take responsibility for that sin and do something about it. He
asks us to reconcile it. We do that through the process of seeking
forgiveness for the things in our hearts that donít agree with God. We do
that by seeking forgiveness from those we have sinned against. God doesnít
require that they forgive us but that we seek it. When we humble ourselves
to seek forgiveness we move closer to God.
This week we decide who will settle our differences. Let me ask
you, have you ever cheated someone? Have you ever cheated at something? I
know we get paid to cheat and the officials get paid to catch us. We have
many sayings about it like; it ainít cheating if you donít get caught. Any
way we look at it we try to get an advantage and hope we donít get caught.
What happens when we do? Are we willing to put our fate in the
hands of the judge? Most times we try to settle things before we get to
court. Think about the last speeding ticket you got. How much did you try to
get out of it before the police officer wrote the ticket? Did you admit your
guilt or were you trying to convince the officer that you were not guilty?
I can tell you it will go better for you if you do not try to talk
the officer out of a ticket. Many of you have heard the story of the time we
were stopped by Virginia ís finest on our way to South Boston at 3:30 am. I
was asked a simple question, did I have any reason to be going the speed the
officer said I was going? I responded, No Sir. In the end he asked me to
drive carefully and he left to give chase to someone else. Realizing your
guilt and confessing it with a humble heart, changes things.
To sum up this passage you could use the phrase, do not think more
of yourself than you ought, it will be your downfall. Jesus knew we like to
be the most important. He knew we will do anything to stay on top. He knew
we would have trouble admitting we were wrong. His point is this, we need to
guard our heart and keep it in tune with God. We need to honor and respect
what God values. When we are wrong we need to settle it and move forward.
We will move on in our study on the Sermon on the Mount next week
to look at the way we should honor the commitments we make to a
relationship. Take some time this week to look into your heart and see if
there are some things that need to be dealt with. Deal with them.
THOUGHTS FROM THE ROAD
RACING SEASON KICKS OFF IN FLORIDA - The Modifieds roared
back into action at New Smyrna this past week and the first race out of the
box showed the over enthusiasm you get after a few months off. More than a
few received hammock rides back to the infield. Jimmy Blewett has three
victories already, 2 SK Mod wins and 1 Tour Mod win in the first two nights.
Matt Hirschman had the other Tour Mod victory.
Across town those fendered guys got it going with the Bud Shootout.
Patience was the key as Kevin Harvick came home with the victory. Scott
Speed has had some challenges trying to get comfortable in these type of
cars. With two incidents already it may prove to be a long season.
All eyes will be focused on Florida this week to see who comes out
on top. I donít know if you caught it but Geoff Bodine is attempting to
qualify for the Daytona 500. His trailer that more resembles one you would
see at Thompson or Stafford along with the one car and a new engine show
that even the little guy can take a shot at the big one. That is not the
same in other sports. Larry Gunselman is the owner of the entry. They are
pretty low on the speed charts but hopefully, for old time sake, former Mod
and Daytona 500 Champion, Geoff can race it into the field.
PRAYER NEEDS - This past week Mike Clayton passed away. Mike
was a good friend to many in the racing family and will be missed,
especially at Wall. Wall Chaplain, Bob Menschner, had this to say, ďWe lost
another friend in racing, this week, Mike Clayton. He worked with Jamie
Tomaino, on his modified, in the early days of his championship year. He
also worked with Dave Micheal, on his Wall Modified when Dave had lots of
championships. He had a good sign painting business and lettered many
racecars, in the early days of racing. He was only 42 but the LORD needed
Rev. Dan handled the services for the family this past Sunday.
Please keep the family in your thoughts and prayers.
CAMPING WORLD EAST SERIES OWNER HURT - Rob Grimm, owner of
the #71 Eddie McDonald piloted ride, had a snowmobile accident last
Thursday. He suffered a few broken bones and a concussion. He is home now,
resting. Pray that he manages his recovery, the pain and discomfort, well.
We all know recovering from this sort of thing takes time. Keep his family
in your prayers as well, as this can be a stressful time for them also.
STAFFORD SK MODS MAY HAVE A SOUTHERN FLAVOR - I spoke with
the folks that put Jeff Earnhardt in a SK Mod for the North-South shootout
and they are still working on putting the necessary arrangements together to
have Jeff compete on a weekly basis for them at SMS. They are optimistic
that it can happen. Weíll see.
Enjoy the racing from Florida , it will be spring soon and the roar
of the engines will be felt at a track near you soon! Be a witness for our
Lord with the ministry decals and apparel. See them at the Online Apparel
Store at www.RWJM.org.
Call us with your prayer and counseling needs and list all your prayer
needs, no matter what part of our racing family you are in, with the Racing
Family Prayer Request Page
www.rwjm.org/page/prayers.php also send your prayer request by mail.
Until next time, remember that God loves you, we love you and
Jesus is Lord over Auto Racing. GOD BLESS.
Mail reaches us at Racing with Jesus Ministries, PO Box 586,
Tolland, CT 06084. Check our weekly printed pages in "Area Auto Racing
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articles. We invite you to input your thoughts as you sign our Guest Book.
Please remember, we can only do what we do because of your prayerful
Numbers 6:24-26 "The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord
make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face
toward you and give you peace."
May God always Bless you, everyday in everyway. Rev. Don
WENDELL & DELORIS MINTER - The Martinsville, VA WODY Gospel Music host
and wife from Ridgeway, VA celebrate their 32nd anniversary. Congratulations
and Praise the Lord!
February 14 *** VALENTINE'S DAY ***
ROY & DORIS DEALL - Riverhead Raceway's Neal Fiola Crew Chief and wife
WAYNE & MARY BLAKE - Of Norwich, CT, the Ass't Infield Coordinator at
Waterford Speedbowl and wife celebrate their 11th anniversary.
KIRK & PAM WISE - Kirk and his wife share their 27th wedding
RICH CAOUETTE & NANCY LaBONNE-CAOUETTE - These East Hartford, CT fans
share their 18th.
WADE HENDRICKSON - Lawrenceville , NJ Modified driver/owner.
KEN KUHLMAN - Veteran AARN columnist/ Bridgeport , NJ Speedway
KRISTI CAMERON - Alfred, ME Jeff Gordon fan.
"DAKOTA" RAY KOHLER - Son of Micro Sprint driver Jason from Fleetwwod,
JIMMY CHESTER - Newfield, NJ Bridgeport driver.
RICK HOCTOR - D.I.R.T. Modified driver.
HARMON "BEAVER" DRAGON - Milton, VT Thunder Road based LM driver.
STEVE BIRD - NNS Crew Chief from Massachusetts .
LORI BEERS - Sister/Team member of Eric Beers Northampton, PA
FRANK VIGLIAROLO, JR. - Medford, NY driver.
February 14 *** VALENTINE'S DAY ***
JERRY MARQUIS - Karen's Valentine husband, Enfield, CT CWES and WMT
driver, 2000 WMT Champion.
BILL VENTURINI - Wife Kathy's Valentine, Chicago , IL ARCA driver.
SCOTT SHARP - Norwalk, CT born, now Jupiter, FL IRL driver.
JESSICA WATTS - Daughter of Riverhead/NASCAR WMT Mod driver Danny and
wife Vivian is 16.
JOHN PAUL TEMCHAK - This son of NHIS Victory Lane Staff Member John
and wife Kathy from Canterbury , NH is 19.
JIM SPENCER - Berwick, PA NSCS driver and PA hero.
PAUL KOTTER - No. Attleboro , MA racing publications sales rep, now
retired to Florida .
JEANNINE NEGRI - Danbury, CT Jeff Fuller fan.
GLEN KONK - Jackson, NJ fan.
BOB BALAAM - Bridgeport Sportsman driver; Stan Ploski's nephew.
JERRY "MAGEE" MILLER - Allentown, PA Mod/NASCAR Mod/Truck driver.
ANDY SCHALTZ - Whip City Mini Sprint and Riverside Mini Stock driver.
ROBERT BLACK - Hickory, NC retired former NNS Director.
STEPHANIE BALL - Daughter of NH Mod driver Rusty and wife Ann is 20.
ARIANNA KOHLER - The daughter of Grandview / Big Diamond NASCAR dirt
Modified driver Warren is 12.
TRACY MARCIEL MANION - Wife of Martin Truex crew chief and 7NY modified
Kevin "Bono" Manion now living in NC.
DEVIN PEREZ - The grandson of LongislandMotorsports.com Publisher/
Editor and Raceway Media magazine columnist, Mike and wife Lori is 6.
SHELLEY GAHAN - Daughter of NH LM/NASCAR CWES driver Bobby and wife
JUDY KRAMER - Riverhead, NY Rusty Wallace fan.
***NEW BEGINNINGS ***
MIKE CLAYTON - We lost another friend in racing, Mike Clayton, who
passed away last week. He worked with Jamie Tomaino, on his modified, in the
early days of his championship year. He also worked with Dave Michel, on his
Wall Modified when Dave won lots of championships. He had a good sign
painting business and lettered many racecars, in the early days of racing.
He was only 42 but the LORD needed him home. Please keep his family and the
Wall Stadium family in your thoughts and prayers.
SHARE YOUR SPECIAL OCCASIONS WITH YOUR RACING FAMILY.
SEND THEM TO:
RACING WITH JESUS MINISTRIES AT PO BOX 586 , Tolland , CT , 06084
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Don Rivers / Racing With Jesus Ministries