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  The Chrome Horn - Racing With Jesus Ministries

   04/15/2011

FINISHING POSITION
by Rev. Don Rivers

   How did you finish? A questioned commonly asked after the race is run. What determines how we finish? What determines how well we did? Our finishing position doesn't always indicate how we ran the race. In fact sometimes finishing last mean victory. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

   How'd you do? Sounds like a familiar refrain. I remember the line from a popular movie, “the same as usual, I lost.” We determine how much progress we are making in racing based on our finishing position. The biggest hurdle in any career is finishing. Finishing is the first step in the development of a race car driver; they must learn how to finish. Anyone can drive fast, many can handle a car, but only a few learn what it means to finish. They are the drivers that advance their careers.

   Funny thing about finishing is you have no chance of winning if you do not finish the race. Yogi Berra said “ 90% of the putts that stop before they reach the hole don't go in.” Oh in case you were wondering the other 10% don't go in either.

   Finishing position doesn't matter. It matters more that you finish. I always look at the laps completed in the race statistics along with the status of the car. They give me a good indication of who was prepared to finish and who wasn't. I know things happen that are out on our control, but to be running at the finish and take the checkered flag indicate a perseverance that marks a winner.

Hebrews 12:1-3, Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses,
let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles,
and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus,
the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross,
scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

   This passage of Scripture indicates many things that will help us learn how to finish. Let's look at a few. It talks about witnesses, that means those who have demonstrated the right way. In racing terms, those who have experience and knowledge about the cars, tracks and other drivers.

   In life it means those who have come before us and have lived a life that honored God. Take a look around; is there someone who you can follow that is leading the right life, a life that honors God? One person that comes to mind is Jesus; He came to show us how to live the right kind of life. I encourage you to read about His life, read the Gospel's of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. They tell us of the life of Jesus.

   This passage also tells us not to get caught up in the traps that life has for us. I racing we can be distracted and lose focus when we forget what the goal is, finishing the race. Someone bumps us or pinches us down and suddenly our goal is to get even instead of finishing the race. I have heard it said by some, I guess I showed him who was boss. They fail to notice that they are parked right along side them behind the wall. What exactly did they show?

   Have you ever noticed in life we are easily distracted? We lose focus and we find ourselves entangled in situations and circumstances that God did not intend for us to experience. We let our selfishness get in the way and when we pursue what we want instead of what honors God we end up in places we should not be.

   When we find ourselves there what should we do? First, don't get discouraged. There is hope in Jesus. Adjust your thinking and turn to Him. He promises that when we turn to Him, He will be faithful and deliver us from our sin. We need to persevere. That means it won't happen overnight. It will take time for us to get out of the entanglements we get ourselves into. It will take effort and prayer. We need to focus on Jesus and learn from His example. Read His word and follow his example.

   As we approach the Easter holiday let us remember what was done for us. This passage reminds us that Jesus “who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Wow, what an awesome example. Have you ever sat on the right side of God?

   Let's take some time so that we can understand that a little. Are we right with God? Do we live lives that honor Him? Jesus did. Jesus offers to us that life so that before God we are right. If we focus on Jesus and accept the sacrifice He made for us we can be right with God. We can have hope. We will live a life full of joy regardless of the circumstances we live in. We will finish the race.

   The term joy escapes our grasp sometimes. We think it means being happy. Not so. Joy is an inner peace and contentment that we experience when we please God. When we are doing God's will and living the life He planned for us. Joy is of the Lord. Paul wrote;

Philippians 4:4-7, Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all.
The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving,
present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts
and your minds in Christ Jesus.

   We must remember that Christ gave His life for us. What did we do to deserve it? We live lives that in many ways fall short of the blessings that God has for us, yet Christ gave His life for us. Think about that a little bit. How easy is it to do something for someone else? Now add to that the fact that the person you are doing it for doesn't deserve it. It is very difficult for us to give to someone we feel is undeserving. God is different, He loves us unconditionally. God doesn't provide for us based on whether we deserve it, He provides for us in spite of our actions.

   When we consider the sacrifice Jesus made for us and the fact that God offer salvation to us in spite of our actions we start to see how we need to respond.

Hebrews 12:1-3, Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses,
let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance
the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the
joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

 

   THOUGHTS FROM THE ROAD
   
   ICEBREAKER BREAKS MANY THINGS - The weather was fantastic, record breaking, some of the best weather I can remember for the opening event of the Whelen Modified Tour season. Although, if you looked hard, you could find a pile of that white stuff sitting around but that was the furthest thing from anyone’s mind on this day.

   I enjoy the first race of the season, everything looks perfect shiny and new. That was not the case at the end. There were more piles in the infield that I think the scrap metal guy will cash in better than some of the race finishers.

   I don’t know what it is about the first and last races of the season but they have the potential to end up in a heap. I know we were all hibernating this winter and maybe we just needed to get it out of our system, but there were a lot of cars caught up in the mess.

   Let’s hope this is just a blip on the radar screen, we have it all out of our system and the season ahead will be a competitive and safe one.

   TC broke through and from a lap down fought all the way back to win this one. He held the lead briefly early on. He regained it later around lap 40 through turn 1 & 2 before spinning on the exit of turn 2. He made the mistake of pulling up to pit and was penalized a lap. He ran under the radar screen until the closing laps when he caught then leader Ryan Preece with 35 to go. He held on through a late race restart and secured the victory.

   Pennink, Stefanik, Preece, Bonsignore rounded out the top five. Now it is off to the Greatest Race of the Spring, The Sizzler at Stafford.

   SOBO HERE WE COME - Headed south this week to South Boston, Virginia for the K&N Pro Series East race. The Dynamic Duo rides again. We will be joined by a few old friends, Kyle Froming, Chaplain for the Whelen Southern Modified Tour and Jim Foster, Track Chaplain at SoBo. It is always good to be with old friends.

   This year we will add a new wrinkle to the mix, John Sines Jr., Christian Country artist will join us. He will sing at Chapel but most importantly we are joining forces to start reaching out across the track to the fans. Our hope is that we will be able to setup some free concerts along the way as a way to reach out to the fans and spread the good news.

   I WAS SPEECHLESS - I want to thank the Tour Officials and all who had a part in naming me the 2010 recipient of the “Smiley” Waterman award for dedicated service to the Whelen Modified Tour. It is a tremendous encouragement. Thank you again.

   Be a witness for our Lord with the ministry decals and apparel. See them at the Show Your Faith Apparel Store at www.rwjm.com. Send us your prayer and counseling needs no matter what part of our racing family you are in, or give us a call. Until next time, remember that God loves you, we love you and

Jesus is Lord over Auto Racing. GOD BLESS.
 

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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
 


CHECKERED CHEERS

***WEDDING ANNIVERSARIES***

April 13
TED & BETH SEMINARA- The Brewster, NY, now in Mt. Holly, NC proprietor of TS Racing Photo and Sprint Cup "AARN" photographer and lively wife share their 20th anniversary.


April 19
JIM & DORIS TROMBLY- The Pit Steward and Credentials manager wife at the Hudson (NH) Speedway have their 41st anniversary.

***HAPPY BIRTHDAYS***

April 13
RUSS HERSEY, JR.- Keene, NH NASCAR KNPSE driver.
CHRIS AMAN- NC based, Interlaken NY Mod Series/NASCAR KNPSE driver.
MITCH GIBBS- Norwich, NY dirt Modified driver.
DARRYL CARL- Voorheesville, NY occasional NASCAR KNPSE driver.
JAY STUART- Preston, CT proprietor of JDM Chassis and accomplished LM driver.
KEITH WHITE- Higginsville, MO All Pro Series driver.
KEN DIPPEL- Upstate NY photographer.
MARK GEER, JR.- A son of former Waterford Mod Tech Inspector Mark and Office Manager wife Linda.
JEAN SMERIGLIO- Brookfield, CT wife of retired Danbury driver Dave.
DEAN DeBOIS- El Monte, CA dad of Pam Krause, wife of AARN's Ass't to the Editor, Earl.

April 14
JOHNNY RUMLEY- Winston-Salem, NC NNS driver.
JEFF ANDRETTI- Bethlehem, PA Indy Car/NSC/NNS driver; Mario's youngest son.
PAUL SACKS- Son of NSC driver Greg.
DICK FEARN- Feeding Hills, MA dad of ProStock driver Tom.

April 15 *TAX FILING DEADLINE*
BOBBY HUTCHENS- NC Modified driver.
JIM RAYMOND- Earlville, NY crewman on the Mitch Gobbs dirt Mod.

April 16
JERRY HIGBIE- Orange County Fairgrounds Speedway Modified driver.
ROCKY DeMATO- Brookfield, CT Mod crewman.

April 17
JOHN FLACH- Lebanon Valley based Mod driver.
MIKE CHASE- Concord, NC NASCAR West 1994 champion/ NASCAR Truck and LMSC driver.
RICH DeLONG- North Hills, Ca NASCAR West driver.
JOEY KOURAFAS- Retired Mass. NASCAR KNPSE driver.
TONY GLOVER- Sprint Cup Crew Chief.
DANIELLE HEDGER- NY based NASCAR KNPSE Brown Racing Crew Chief Ray's wife.
HOWARD & CAROL LARSON- This Stafford Springs, CT NASCAR WMT couple share the same birthday.

April 18
JONNY DENNISON- This LI tow truck operator who hangs out at Riverhead and has been know to frequent the WMT stops in Connecticut has his special day. Rev. Pat, we’re still looking out for him.
GEOFF BODINE- The oldest of the racing Bodine brothers of Chemung, NY.
JIM HAWKEY- Wall Township Speedway Modified driver.
ROBERT TYLER LABONTE- Son of NSC driver Bobby and wife Donna.
CHELSEA MARQUIS- A daughter of Enfield, CT NASCAR CWES/WMT driver Jerry and wife Karen.
GERALD CHAMBERLAIN- Birthday wishes go out from the Nagy's in Nazareth, PA.

April 19
JACK ROUSH- NSC/NNS/Trans-Am multi-team owner.
ROBERT YATES- Noted engine builder, NSC team owner.
BOB AILES- St. Johnsbury, VT LM driver.

***NEW BEGINNINGS***

STEWART PARE- A friend and competitor at Wall Stadium passed away this week from medical complications. Stewart loved all types of Motorsports competing in Drag Racing, Motorcycles before coming to run a modified and factory Stock at Wall. Stewart was 48.


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Tolland, CT, 06084


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SourceRev Don Rivers / Racing With Jesus Ministries
Posted: April 15, 2011

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