Rev. Don Rivers
Have you ever done something wrong? Seems like a simple question with a
simple answer, but why is it we forget that when it comes time to forgive
someone else from a mistake they made. Forgiveness is something we want to
receive but many times are not as willing to give. Greetings in the name of
our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Let me set the record straight, we all make mistakes. We all make
choices that seem right at the time but in retrospect they were not the
correct ones. That being said, why have we become a society that has
developed a less forgiving attitude. Zero tolerance is not the right way to
deal with mistakes.
As the season winds down I can remember several occasions over the
past few months that mistakes on and off the track have been made. At the
moment when they occurred it seemed the whole season hinged on them. After a
little time passed there significance has waned and we have moved on. Those
are the ones that are easy to deal with. Other mistakes take on a life of
Some are not truly mistakes but maybe a little creative rules
interpretation. Penalties are levied and corrections are made. We move on or
at least we are supposed to. Some of us have longer memories than others.
Some issues never seem to be dealt with and they linger and fester.
These types effect relationships and are the most destructive. No matter
what the situation was, when mistakes are made they need to be corrected. We
need to take responsibility for them and seek forgiveness. We then need to
forget about it and move on.
Forgive and forget; a familiar refrain, but one of the most
difficult things for us to do. We want to get back at the person who wronged
us. We have a need to get even. We have our rights and no one is going to
take advantage of us. We say that we forgive but we will never forget. We
tend to be unforgiving people when it comes to others, but we want to be
forgiven when it comes to us.
Letís take a look at what God says about this issue. Godís rules
never change and His standard is always the same. God does not accept our
mistakes. God is right and just and mistakes are not something that God can
accept. God says all mistakes are the same, big, small doesnít matter, all
mistakes fall into the category of sin, missing the mark. We all have made
them and all will have to pay the penalty.
There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of
the glory of God. Romans 8:23
And the penalty is the same;
For the wages of sin is death, Romans
But when we look at the rest of that verse and we start to see what
God intends for us.
but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
God said I will make a way for your mistakes to be forgiven; I will
send My Son, Jesus Christ, to pay the penalty for you.
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. John 3:16-18
Keeping the peace is a difficult task. Have you ever thought about
what it takes to be a peacemaker? Jesus was the ultimate peacemaker. He gave
his life so that we could have peace with God. Jesus came, suffered, died
and rose again so that the penalty for our sin would be paid in full. We can
receive that payment by accepting it. It is a gift from God.
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith--and
this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God-- not by works, so that no
one can boast. Ephesians 2:8-9
God provided this opportunity for forgiveness and we can receive it
by accepting Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. When we do we make peace
with God, we restore our relationship with Him, our sin is forgiven and
remembered no more.
As the season comes to an end, take a look back and see if there
are some people you need to forgive. We are expected to forgive as God
forgave us. That means not because we deserve it but because He loves us.
Forgive not because they deserve it, but because God forgave you.
We cannot experience the full blessing of God if we refuse to
forgive others. Our unwillingness to forgive implies that our standard is
greater than Godís. That is not correct; Godís standard is the only one that
counts. If God is willing to forgive you there is no reason we could have
for not forgiving others. Make that commitment this week. Commit that you
will go to the people you have refused to forgive and forgive them. Donít
worry if they refuse to accept it, many have refused to accept the
forgiveness that God offers. We are not called to make people accept our
forgiveness, but to offer the gift. Offer that gift to someone today.
God Bless, Rev. Don
THOUGHTS FROM THE ROAD
AN UNPLANNED WEEKEND OFF - Well, by now we should have expected
it, weather postponed the World Series of Racing at Thompson Speedway.
Credit goes to Thompson for making the call early enough to save teams that
drive extended distances. It is always a risk as the weather forecasters
have not proven to be very reliable. I am sure when Friday and Saturday
turned out to be acceptable but cold racing days there were some who were
questioning the decision. Sunday was another story, there was no way we
could have raced on Sunday unless maybe we were racing snowmobiles. You only
needed to tune into the football being played down the road in Foxboro to
know the weather conditions.
We will try again this week, the schedule will be the same, let us
hope the weather will cooperate. We are looking forward to seeing the race
to the championship contested by Lia and Preece. As these two legendary
modified teams come to the track with this final shot at the title we should
be in for a treat. I am looking for a great race, see you there.
CHANGES - With the changes to the schedule at Thompson we
will not be able to make the trip to Wall Stadium on Saturday night. We were
looking forward to taking the trip down to the Jersey shore for the Twin
Tour Type Mod features. It is always good to see Jim, Sue, Bob and all the
folks that support what we do. It looks like our next opportunity to visit
will be for some Thanksgiving Day Weekend racing.
SEASON WINDING DOWN TO NORTH-SOUTH SHOOTOUT - One of the
canít miss events of the year comes after the champions have been crowned,
The John Blewett III Memorial North-South Shootout is one event that we look
forward to all year. A fast track, the best drivers all come together for
some fantastic racing. Make your plans to be there, we will.
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
News", the East Coastís largest weekly racing paper" See our on-line Apparel
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www.rwjm.org for past
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
REV. PAT & BETTY EVANS - This would have been the 26th aniversary for
Pat and Betty. Please keep Betty in your prayers as this will be a difficult
JIM & PAT BEEBE - The Star Speedway NASCAR flagman and wife have their
DON & MELINDA FOWLER - This Waterford Speedbowl Modified driver and wife
have their 37th anniversary.
KEITH & DEBORAH CYR - The AARN photographer from Danbury, CT and wife
share their 12th anniversary.
MR. & MRS. DALE HOLDRIDGE - This senior Waterford Speedbowl driver
and wife have their 46th anniversary.
RAY & PAULA ACKERLY - This Katonah, NY dirt Modified driver and wife
celebrate their 18th anniversary.
MORGAN SHEPHERD - Conover, NC NNS driver and outspoken Christian.
BOB LeSIEUR - No. Easton, MA NSC photographer.
ROBERT ROSSI, JR. - Riverhead, LI, NY based Mike Ewanitsko NASCAR WMT
TONY VECCHIO - Syracuse, NY Former NASCAR CWES team owner and chassis
JOHNNY UNSER - Long Beach, Ca born, Sun Valley, ID IRL driver.
MIKE SWANN - Rev. Pat's cousin from Sumneytwon, PA.
JAYE COTTER - Wife and assistant to No. Attleboro, MA racing
paper/magazine sales rep., Paul.
RUTH TAGG - Mom of Webster, MA CT Mod retired driver Tom.
TREVA MERRILL - The wife of Newton, MA based Monadnock Speedway (Keene,
NH) GM, Carl.
CATHERINE & CHRISTIAN HANKS - The twins of CT ProStock driver Roy and
NATALIE BELMONT - A daughter of Pennsy based ARCA/NNS driver Andy and
TRACY LESLIE - Clemens, MI NNS/ASA driver.
EDDIE DUMBROWSKI - Riverhead Raceway based Rusty Turbush LM crewman.
STEPHANIE PETFIELD - A daughter of Thornwood, NY RWJM CWES Pastor Dan
and wife Debbie.
S.J. GOLEMBESKI - crewmwmber for the WMT #99 of Jamie Tomaino.
WARD BURTON - South Boston, VA former NSC driver.
BILLY "BEAR" CALLICHO - Meriden, CT top innovator, owner on the
PAUL TEETER - Ithaca, NY antique car enthusiast.
AMANDA GRAVEL - A daughter of NH ProStock driver Gege and wife Lisa.
JOSHUA BRANDON LAWRENCE - The son of Dino and Chris, proprietors of
Carolina Signworks in Rockingham, NC RWJM Counselors turns 11.
SAMMY SWINDELL - WoO Sprint driver.
DEBORAH PETFIELD - RWJM Counselor/ Singer from Thornwood, NY; CWES
Pastor Dan's wife.
BRANDON SETZER - The son of Newton, NC NASCAR CTS driver Dennis and
wife Darla is 14.
DICK TRICKLE - Fan favorite retired Wisconsin based NSC team driver.
NEWT HARTMAN - Flagtown, NJ East Windsor Mod driver.
RAY HEDGER - Williamson, NY Bruce Driver WMT Crew Chief.
MARC OSWALD - Vineland, NJ based "Trackside" Magazine Field Sales
AMANDA PETFIELD - Thornwood, NY RWJM CWES Pastor & vice president Dan
and wife Debbie's youngest is 16.
ALAN CLAFFIE - East Series Racing web master and Steve Park look
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Don Rivers / Racing With Jesus Ministries