With the unofficial start to the summer season, comes wall to wall, wheel to
wheel racing. The capital of racing world, Indianapolis, was a buzz with the
100th running of the 500, while the stock car world was focused on
Charlotte. If you are a race fan, Memorial Day Weekend leaves you with no
shortage of racing to watch or attend. Greetings in the name of our Lord and
Savior Jesus Christ.
Racing imitates life; the action last weekend had something for
everyone, including defeat snatched from the jaws of victory. In arguably
the two most watched races of the weekend it wasnít until the final turn of
the final lap that the winner was decided. The victory went to the driver
who put themselves in a position to win and when the opportunity presented
itself they were ready.
Weíll come back to the racing action in a moment, but let me talk
about running in such a way as to win. Paul writes this about people who run
9:24-27; nlt, Donít you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only
one person gets the prize?
So run to win! All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to
win a prize that will fade away,
but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run with purpose in every step. I am
not just shadowboxing.
I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should.
I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified.
the writer of Hebrews adds;
Hebrews 12:1-3; nlt, Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge
crowd of witnesses to the life of faith,
let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so
easily trips us up.
And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by
keeping our eyes on Jesus,
the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy
awaiting him, he endured the cross,
disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside Godís
Think of all the hostility he endured from sinful people; then you wonít
become weary and give up."
may have seen the message on our pace cars; it is a combination of the
thoughts of these two passages, ďRun the race in such a way as to win, throw
off everything that hinders and focus on Jesus.Ē
There is a right way and a wrong way to prepare and run the race.
Most of us choose the wrong way, it is just human nature. We hope that we
can be good enough or be a good person and when we stand before God we can
ask for forgiveness and He will have pity on us and save us. Nothing is
further from the truth.
Think of it this way, how much work goes into winning a race? How
much practice? How many race cars? How many shop workers and crewmembers?
How much does it take to win?
Funny thing is I have seen some of the most talented drivers fail
to win because on some level they didnít have what it took, whether it was
equipment, resources or perseverance. Winning isnít easy, you donít just
wake up and youíre a winner.
Practice, discipline, training, are three things that are necessary
to live a life that honors God. We cannot wait until the last moment and
expect that we will make the right choices when we have to. We cannot wait
and expect to know the right way to turn when faced with a decision.
Running the race requires us to know what pleases God. We find that
out by reading His Word and talking with Him. Then we need to put that into
practice, disciplining ourselves to focus on what will honor God and
training our mind and body to execute those thoughts. Only then will we be
in the race to win the race.
God knows that is a tall order and made some provisions for us; He
provided Jesus who sacrificed his life so that when we fall short we are
forgiven. God also provides the Holy Spirit to guide us, teach us and
convict us as we train ourselves to live lives that are pleasing to God.
Both are available for the asking, seek God out, accept the forgiveness that
Jesus offers, ask the Holy Spirit into your heart.
You can reach out to God while He is still available or you can
wait. But let me assure you of this, if you decide to live life without
seeking out Godís direction and hope that in the end you will receive
forgiveness, it wonít go well for you.
Now is the time, today is the day, commit to run the race in such a
way as to win, throw off everything that hinders and focus on Jesus.
THOUGHTS FROM THE ROAD
WHERE DO WE BEGIN -
Before I get too far into my thoughts I want to take a moment and share a
few things with you.
Charles Kepley, 57, died Tuesday, May 24, 2011,
unexpectedly at his home. Charles was born on Sept. 26, 1953, in Mecklenburg
County. He was a service technician at Energy United, owner of C and C
Racing Souvenirs, promoter of the North-South John Blewett III Memorial
Shootout and also coached several local softball teams. He leaves his son,
Chad Kepley; his mother of Lexington; a sister, Lisa Sizemore and husband
Joel of Winston-Salem; two special nieces, Madison and Abigail; and special
friends, Sherry Steed and daughter Haley.
Charles had a heart for Modified racing and did his best to present
an annual event to showcase that talent. The Modified community has lost a
great champion and advocate. Please join with us in lifting up his family
during this time of great loss.
I also received word on Friday that Tommy Barrett, a competitor in
the SK Lite division at Stafford was in a serious accident on his way home
from the Thompson Speedway Thursday night. He is in the hospital; I talked
with his dad, and they are hopeful. I have plans to visit with him and I
will update you on his condition. Please lift Tommy and his family up in
A note of encouragement came at Chapel on Friday at Stafford. Beth
Mueller, wife of Troyer Bob, shared that she will participate in this years
Relay for Life as a 10 year survivor. She writes; ďThank you for the service
you provide at the race track, for the past couple of years I would sit back
but not attend, this year I made a promise to myself that I would attend
each week that I was at the track.Ē
ďAs we talked on Friday, I am proud that on Friday, June 3rd I will
be able to participate in my 10th American Cancer Society's Relay for Life
as a Survivor, I know through my Faith I am able to do this.Ē See you in
June, Beth Mueller
SILK GOES WIRE TO WIRE - Friday night saw Ronnie Silk the
last to qualify as he put his car on the pole and never looked back; leading
every lap on his way to Victory Lane. Although there wasnít a challenge for
the lead there was plenty of racing to watch as drivers contended to the
NO RESPECT - Rowan Pennink, the Rodney Dangerfield of the
short track racing this year, continued his great run with a second place
finish on Friday and a victory at Twin State in the MRS. He extended his
lead in the WMT points race and he leads the points in the MRS. I think that
should be enough to break him into the top ten at least!
MRS AT TWIN STATE - Revís Scott and Ray sent in this report;
Well it was off to the North Country for round 3 of the MRS. After the show
at Mad Dog everyone was expecting some excitement. After a couple cars
withdrew for mechanical there were 26 ground pounders ready to go out. It
was another rough Memorial Day weekend for most but for the Pennink stable
this year was much better then last. After a strong showing with the WMT at
Stafford he got around Chris Pasteryak and never looked back.
At the end of the night the pits were full of tore up cars so let's
hope for better at Seekonk.
It was a very good night though as we got to meet Jim Dube and his
wife who are the track chaplains at Twin State. Itís always great when you
can meet new people who have the same heart as you.
Also want to say thanks to Thompson Speedway for letting us roll
the pace car out in front of the MRS for the feature.
Finally let's go Bruins as hockey is alive in New England.
Rev. Ray added; When Rev. Scott asked me to join him for the
MRS race at Twin State Speedway in Claremont, NH, I was looking forward to
my first "small track USA" experience. He told me it was located up in,
"God's Country". I knew we were in for a great time as we approached the
track, and the last 4 miles were on gravel road. The quote of the day was
from Rev. Scott, "Where else would you want to be on Memorial Day weekend
than driving down a gravel country road, listening to June Carter Cash
singing, "Goin' To Jackson". He was right! Other than a few sprinkles of
rain the night was full of MRS excitement and blessings. The folks there
couldn't have been more accommodating to us.
We met the local Track Chaplain, Rev. Jim and Roxanne Dube who were
praying over the track for God's protection and blessings that night. Prayer
for God's hand of protection upon each driver & crew, track officials,
safety crew, and fans was to become evident as several hard wrecks happened
and each one walked away. Many new friends were made and sure enough, we had
a great evening of racing.
The Thompson Speedway guys were there with their pace car and they
asked us to lead out the MRS with it. Probably would have gotten home
earlier- except Rev. Scott left the air conditioning on with the car running
while the drivers were introduced & and we then prayed with them. There was
a huge puddle of water running down the track between turns 1 & 2. Thought
for sure they were going to need some speedy dry to get the event started!
Yes, you know you are at small track USA when the main wrecker is a
big yellow Cat backhoe-bucket loader. Looking forward to a return trip, Rev.
Rev. Dan heads to Bowman Gray this Saturday night for the K&N Pro
Series East race and I will be heading north to Star Speedway for the open
Mod show. I am not sure where you are headed, but let me encourage you to
head out and support live, local racing.
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.
Mail reaches us at Racing with Jesus Ministries, PO Box 586,
Tolland, CT 06084.
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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
RANDY & LYNDA HEDGER- The Tioga Speedway/NASCAR WMT driver and wife from
Morrisville, NY share their special day.
BOB & TRACY COX- Rev. Pat's cousin in Boyertown, PA and wife, both NNC and
Sprint car fans, share their 14th anniversary.
SCOTT & LISA JAMES- This couple from Canterbury, CT who helped lead this
ministry in the past have their 18th anniversary
LLOYD & LINDA MOORE- This Unity, ME driver and wife have their 38th
REV. DON AND LYNDA RIVERS- The RWJM President and WMT Pastor and wife
celebrate their 31st anniversary.
NORM PATRICK- Publisher of NY State's "Gater Racing News."
JAY SAUTER- NNS/Craftsman Truck Series driver.
DAVY JONES- Lake Tahoe, NV Offroad and CWTS driver.
DARRYL LEWIS- New York Southern Tier asphalt Modified driver.
LORRAINE SYLVESTRI- The wife of Rich, retired proprietor of Sylvestri's Auto
Care World Center of Speed in Canterbury, CT.
LEW MARDEN- Onwer of Air Transport, Inc in Concord, NH and Jamie Tomaino
NASCAR WMT fan.
DAVID BAKKER- Former NASCAR KNPSE Race Director
MARY ANN MOYER- Delaware writer.
MATTHEW THOMAS- Son of northern New England's "Racin' Paper" Publisher Mark.
KYLE PETTY- Randleman, NC NSC driver now TV commentator.
SATCH WORLEY- Rocky Mount, VA driver.
SAMMY BEAVERS- Glen Gardner, NJ retired famous dirt Modified driver.
STEVE KINSER- Bloomington, IN World of Outlaws superstar.
LISA LILLQUIST- The daughter of former Thompson Speedway Late Model driver
Jerry and wife Debbie, now living in Myrles Inlet, SC.
JOHN UDES- Wall Township speedway/RoC Modified driver from Morris Plains,
SCOTT NICKEL- The Thompson Speedway based photographer and brother of
BETTY ANN EVANS- The wife of Racing with Jesus Ministries founder Rev. Pat
BOBBY HILLIN, JR.- Midland, TX NNS driver.
MICHAEL DOKKEN- St. Petersburg, FL LM/CWTS driver.
JENETTE SMULLEY- Daughter of Big Diamond owners Fritz and Krista Roehrig.
BUTCH MILLER- Coopersville, MI NASCAR CWTS driver.
MIKE & TED CHRISTOPHER- Plainville, CT twin drivers, both talented in open
and closed wheel competition.
EUGENE SENA- Middletown, CT Mike Christopher and NASCAR WMT crewman.
GARY NELSON- NASCAR Managing Director of Competition.
TONY SYLVESTER, JR.- The son of semi-retired Lebanon, CT Mod/NASCAR KNPSE
driver Tony and wife Diane.
LISA NICKEL- The daughter of Thompson Speedway photographer Scott and Joan.
RANDY PORTER- Greenville, SC NNS and Greenville Pickens Speedway LMSC
JIM HAILEY, JR.- Winston-Salem, NC Tri-County and Caraway Speedways LMSC
driver; son of Richard Childress Show Car Team Manager Jim, Sr.
BILL "TIGER" PERRY- Seekonk Speedway Sportsman driver.
WENDELL & CAROL KILCOLLINS- This husband and wife from Stafford Springs both
celebrate. Wendell is a retired Modified driver.
KATY COLSON- Daughter of Leominster, MA ProStock driver Fran and wife
VICTORIA ACKERLY- The daughter of Orange County Fairgrounds Speedway
Modified driver Ray.
DENNIS DEMERS- Shelburne, VT NASCAR KNPSE driver.
RAY HORNER- New Jersey asphalt Modified driver.
TIM DAMIANI- Pennsy Modified driver.
ANTHONY DAMIANI- A son of Tim's.
JIM BOARDMAN- Maynard, MA LM/NASCAR KNPSE driver.
MIKE SWAIM- Archdale, NC LMSC driver.
CHUCK MONTVILLE- Crewman on the Ralph Solhem's NASCAR WMT team.
LESLIE LaJOIE- Wife of two time NNS champion driver Randy.
MARTIN SCHIFF- Wayland, MA proprietor of Sponsor Development of Reston, Ent.,
husband of Wayland Travel's Jane.
JOEL MARTIN- Son of Concord, NC NSC photographers Gary and Judy.
BRIDGETT JIVANELLI- Daughter of Riverhead Raceway driver Dan.
KELSEY BABB- Daughter of Beech Ridge Speedway LM driver Bobby and wife
ZACHARY D'ALESSANDRO- Agawam, MA son of Ingrid and former Modified driver
WILLIAM MEFFORD - The Anderson Speedway
family is mourning the loss of its great friend and family member, William
Mefford. Willie succumbed to the injuries sustained when the hood on his
Late Model flew up and accelerated the car at full throttle into the
barriers head on in turn 3 Saturday night, May 21, 2011.
"Willie was a great friend and a gentlemen competitor" said Rick
Dawson, Speedway owner. "He embraced the return of the Late Models to the
Speedway this year and was destined to be its Champion. Willie was a
pleasure to be around and always hold a place in my heart as the first
feature champion when R.J. (Scott) and I purchased the track 15 years ago."
"I want to thank our safety crew, Anderson Fire Department and the
helicopter medical staff from St. Johns who did everything humanly possible
to resuscitate Willie. Sometimes God has a different plan for us and this
time he took our friend to a happier place." continued Dawson. I know I
speak for all of our fans and competitors when I say our thoughts and
prayers are with Willie's family and wish them God's comfort in their time
SHARE YOUR SPECIAL OCCASIONS WITH YOUR RACING FAMILY.
SEND THEM TO:
RACING WITH JESUS MINISTRIES
PO Box 586
Tolland, CT, 06084
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Racing With Jesus Ministries Website