At times in our lives we lose our desire. We grow tired. We take a back seat
and withdraw from what is going on around us. We reason that one person
cannot make a difference. We grow complacent. Greetings in the name of our
Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
I spent most of last week at Super Dirt Week in Syracuse assisting
Finish Line Chaplains as they ministered to the racing community that
assembled for the 40th edition of this famed event. I was awestruck by the
crowds, not only racers but fans, there are people everywhere; people from
all walks of life, gathered together around this one event.
As we held a chapel service on Sunday Morning over 40 of us
gathered to worship and honor God. Chaplain Ed Harkins challenged the group
to be ten times bigger next year. His question was simple, have we grown
complacent in honoring God.
Recently we held the tenth anniversary of the 9-11 tragedy; God was
not present at the ceremony. They didnít want to offend anyone. Take a look
around, we have removed God from just about everything in society. Has it
I think we, as Christians, have stood by and watched as a minority
of people have interjected their will on this country. We have removed the
presence of God from our schools, our workplaces, and in some cases our
homes. We have grown complacent.
We need to change that. We need to stand up for what is right, what
is good, what is honorable in the eyes of God. How can we expect Godís
blessings to be upon us when we refuse to live in a way that honors Him?
As I drove into the track on Sunday morning the parking lot was
littered with cans and I thought to myself; we have become a people of
overindulgence. We have gone so far I wonder if we can recover and return to
a society that seeks out God while He still can be found.
Donít misunderstand me, I think it is great to get together and
enjoy the company of others; a party is a good thing. Where we go wrong is
when we overindulge, in this case alcohol, to the point that we are
wandering around without a clue where we are or what we are doing. Did God
create us for that?
I think we have overindulged in the pursuit of pleasing ourselves
instead of pleasing God. We have given up the things that are precious in
His sight for things that will fade away, rust and rot. We need to take a
step back and take a look at the lives we are leading, question ourselves,
is this really what I want out of life?
Most times when we are honest with ourselves we want something
meaningful out of life, something that will last, something we can hand down
to the next generation. We want to be honored and respected. That is not the
road we are on.
Ed shared about a sign he saw recently, America Bless God. At first
glance you may think that whoever put the words up on the sign got them
backwards and meant to say God Bless America. No, they got the sign right,
America has moved away from what made this country the strongest, most
powerful, richest nation in the world, God. We have forsaken the moral
foundation on which this country was built. We have moved away for God. We
have grown complacent. It is time we returned.
Ö if my people, who are called by my name,
will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked
then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their
Jesus was very clear in his
teaching, good comes from doing what honors God, it does not produce evil.
Evil does not produce good. We cannot be actively pursuing things that donít
honor God and expect that God will bless us. It rings hollow when we ask for
Godís blessing while we want to live any way we choose.
Who knows better how to live the best, most fulfilling, and most
satisfying life possible; you and me or God? I contend that the creator of
life, God himself, knows what is beneficial for us, He knows what is
fulfilling for us, and He knows what is satisfying for us.
We think we know and we pursue those things only to attain them and
find we are not fulfilled or satisfied. We then move on to something else
and pursue that only to find the same result. We grow tired of pursuing
things and we grow complacent. We develop an attitude of indifference. We
reason that because nothing I wanted fulfilled or satisfied me then there
must not be anything that can.
Nothing could be further from the truth. There is something that
will fulfill you and satisfy you, a relationship with Jesus Christ. He is
the only one that can fill that hole in your life. He is the one that makes
Complacency means uninformed self-satisfaction especially when
accompanied by unawareness of actual dangers or deficiencies. We did not
realize the road we are on would lead to this place. We were unaware of the
consequences of our decision. We need to change, not only for our own good,
but for the good of everything we have come to love about this great nation.
We need to stand up for what is right in the eyes of God.
The first place to start is with our own personal relationship to
Him. Do we have one? Is it a good one? How much time and effort have we put
into growing it? Where do we start? Each one of us has an individual
responsibility to seek out God. We also have a collective responsibility to
gather together in His name and change the world in which we live. Donít be
complacent; take an active roll in leading your life out of bondage and into
I am going to continue to write on this subject for the next few
weeks with the hope of helping us all strengthen our personal relationship
with God. My hope would be to see 400 next year at chapel on Sunday morning
in Syracuse. Maybe we could even have it on the front stretch and fill the
THOUGHTS FROM THE
DIRT ROADS - Have you ever
gone down a dirt road and wondered if it leads to someplace? The dirt road
this week led to Syracuse. I have heard the saying ďeat my dustĒ as it
refers to my car is faster than yours, but this weekend it didnít matter,
the air was full of what makes dirt track racing different from other forms
of racing, dirt. The weather was superb, the sun blazed in a cloudless sky,
t-shirts and shorts were the order of the day. I packed several items that
never left my suitcase and other items that I should have packed but didnít.
I did find a few of my asphalt friends playing in the dirt, Jimmy
Blewett was there and won the Futures 358 Feature on Friday only to get
collected up in the Twin Twenties later that ended his weekend early. Chuck
Hossfeld was in the house but things just didnít work out his way. TC
thought driving on dirt was worth another try. He liked the fast track and
the speed but the jockeying for position proved to be a little tough to get
a handle on, He found himself rim riding the turn two wall after he got
bumped up into the cushion going into one. The damage wasnít too bad and
they had the car back out there for the last chance race on Sunday.
On a personal note, I did speak with Teddy about Quinn, she is
doing much better and all the ill effects from the incident have gone away.
That was great news to hear.
There were other familiar faces in the pits and it is always good
to get around and see them once in a while. I do want to extend my thanks to
Ed Harkins and the Finish Line Chaplains for allowing me to come and help
them out this weekend. Ed, Kevin Westcott and Dave Miller are doing a great
job reaching out to the dirt racing family; please keep them in your
prayers. Also, many families have lost loved ones within the dirt racing
family; please lift them up in prayer.
THOMPSON FINALLY GETS IT IN - The forth time was the charm,
Thompson closed out their regular season just one week before the big World
Series Final. Keith Rocco was crowned the Sunoco Modified Champ and the
other five divisions also crowned their champions.
We will be there this weekend for the final event on the Whelen
Modified Tour. With the points race still tight it will be a must see for
all asphalt modified fans. Letís hope for the same weather we had this past
Until next time, 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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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
JOHN & LISA SHAPLEIGH- These former JBIII crew members celebrate their 4th
RICH & LORRAINE SYLVESTER- The retired proprietor of Sylvestri's Auto Care,
formerly known as the northern world center of speed, in Canterbury, CT and
lovely wife celebrate 49 wonderful years together. Just ask Rich.
RON & CAROL MENTUS- This AARN racing writer and great Christian witness and
wife share their 49th anniversary.
BILL & JUDY ROBINSON- These Wall Township Speedway fans from Whiting, NJ,
and she the daughter of Doris Bradley, share their 26th anniversary.
RANDY & LISA LaJOIE- The Norwalk, CT born NNS/CWTS driver and two-time
champion and wife share their 19th anniversary.
JERRY & KAREN MARQUIS- This Enfield, CT popular Former NASCAR KNPSE/WMT
driver and wife have their anniversary.
FRANK & LORI CANNEY- This AARN photographer and wife from Meriden, CT have
their 33rd anniversary.
RALPH & LINDA AUSTIN- This Sanford, ME couple, she the Barney McRae scorer,
he a Barney McRae crewman, share their 40th anniversary.
RUSTY & TERRY WATKINS- This NASCAR KNPSE team crewman and wife have their
JIMMY & SUSAN STRUPP- The Long Islander, now turned Charlotte, North
Carolinian and wife have their 22nd.
RUSTY & ANE BALL- This Keene, NH Claremont Speedway/MRS Modified driver and
wife have their 33rd anniversary.
NED JARRETT- From Hickory, NC, one of racing's great Christian examples and
retired NSC champion.
SMOKEY WARREN- Popular Grandview/ Big Diamond NASCAR Sportsman Modified
MARK DISMORE- Greenfield, IN Midget and IRL driver.
MORGAN SHEPHERD- Conover, NC NSC/NNS/CWTS driver of the Racing with Jesus
HAROLD DAUNCEY III- NJ asphalt Modified driver.
DANNY BAGWELL- Birmingham, AL NASCAR All Pro Series driver.
ERNIE GAHAN- Retired NH National NASCAR Sportsman champion and 300 plus
ProStock feature winner Bobby's dad.
JACK DENNIS- Laura's dad and Appomattax, VA Jamie Tomaino NASCAR WMT fan.
CAITLIN BROWN- A daughter of Farmingdale, NJ Dwarf Car driver Bobby and wife
JASON JARRETT- Hickory, NC NNS/ARCA driving grandson of Ned and son of NSC's
JOE VENEZIAN- Proprietor of Perth Amboy Springs (NJ) and Statewide Trailers.
JERRY GLANVILLE- Roswell, GA occasional ARCA/NNS driver, former NFL coach
and TV commentator.
PATRICK MANNING- Sheldonville, MA Carl Pasteryak Modified fan.
EARL PELLETIER Ė Driver of an SK Light at Stafford Motor Speedway.
MATTHEW PELLETIER Ė Oldest son of SK Light Stafford Motor Speedway driver
KRISTIN MARQUIS- Another one of Enfield, CT Karen and NASCAR KNPSE/ WMT
driver Jerry's kids and she celebrates on their anniversary.
SEAN WOODSIDE- Saugus, CA NASCAR West Series driver.
DON PRINGLE- Ontario, NY Street Stock driver at Spencer Speedway.
WOODY FEBRIELLO- Retired asphalt Modified team owner.
TOODI ROSATI- The former Toodi Gelinas, famous weekly racing columnist, wife
of retired Modified driver John Rosati in Agawam, MA.
KEVIN PELLETIER- Owner of the #27 SK Light at Stafford Motor Speedway.
MARK BRIDGES- Durham, ME former Joe Bessey crewman.
KEN SPRING- The "Area Auto Racing News", RWJM and KNPSE photographer from
RIT DULAC- Plantsville, CT NASCAR retired Modified and KNPSE driver.
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RACING WITH JESUS MINISTRIES
PO Box 586
Tolland, CT, 06084
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