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  The Chrome Horn - Racing With Jesus Ministries

   04/29/2014


PROVIDENCE
by Rev. Don Rivers
 

  Do you ever wonder sometimes where the resources we need will come from? God is in the providing business. He provides for our needs and has been known to provide blessings that overflow. His intent is that we would use the overflow to provide for others. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

  
What did you think when you read the title of this weeks article? Did you think I was talking about a city in Rhode Island ? Well, in a way I am. Providence received its name from Roger Williams, a religious exile from Massachusetts , for him this was Godís provision. Have we seen Godís hand provide for us?

  When we focus on having the resources to race, what do we miss? Does God provide what we want or does he provide what we need? I think there are times, even when our world seems to be crashing down around us, that God make a provision for us. That provision will require us to make a decision about who are we serving. Who is more important in our life?

  Hank Parker Jr. is not a household name because of a decision he made. At home, instilled in him, were Christian values that would serve him well when he had to make a difficult choice. His biography helps us understand how he honored God.

  The Parkers are big on family, always have been. When Hank Jr. began racing in the Busch Series, he did so in a car fielded by his father. The team did the best it could through the 2000 season, and after that, Parker turned to a team co-owned by Frank Cicci and Scott Welliver. It was with them that he scored his two career victories, one each in 2001 and 2002.

  Parker appeared headed for even bigger things. He made the lone Cup start of his career for Ray Evernham late in 2002, completing 389 of 393 laps at Rockingham and finishing 33rd. After that, he went to work on putting the final touches on the deal that would've put him in a Roush Racing Ford for the 2003 season.

  Parker was testing a car that would have been his car at Daytona when word came down that the sponsor was going elsewhere. You see Hank had made it clear that he would not drive a car with a certain sponsor on the hood, and they decided to go elsewhere. There were no other sponsors available and Parker was out, almost for good.

  He drove just six Busch Series races in 2003, three of them in a Dale Earnhardt Inc. mount for his good friend Dale Jr. While Parker scored four top-10 finishes in those half-dozen races, he has just one other start in the series, at Nashville for Roush in a fill-in deal for Edwards.

  While turning down a certain chance at stardom on the Cup series might have deflated a lesser person, Parker was confident that moving away from racing was Godís plan for his life.

  "Seeing how God is in control has been amazing," Parker said. "There came a point in time in my career where I really just laid down my career and my life, and gave my life to Christ. God has changed so many things and my perspective on things."

  "I'm good ... I'm content," Parker said. "I actually had a phone call the other day to see if I'd come back, and I felt really good about saying no. ... It was time to bow out. I feel like I gave it a good shot. I feel like I gave it my best. A lot about racing is timing. Obviously, there are people that were better than I was, but I feel like I did the best that I could.Ē

  He decided to honor God in his decisions and let his life be led by the values that he was taught about God. We see Godís provision when we allow God to have priority over everything in our lives.

  God has a provision for all of us, but it requires that we see things through His eyes. It requires that we have His values. It requires us to allow God to have full control over our lives.

James 4:13-17, Now listen, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there,
carry on business and make money." Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life?
You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say,
"If it is the Lord's will, we will live and do this or that." As it is, you boast and brag. All such boasting is evil.
Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn't do it, sins.

  James points out to us that when we make our agenda and we live focused on it we bypass what God would have us do. Even if we plan on doing good things we miss the point if we are not doing what God wants us to. I remember it this way, ďGet out of my way I am going to do great things for God.Ē We can get so focused on what we think is right that we lose sight of what is going on around us.

  We see it in racing, teams are so intent on winning they will do almost anything. They justify the means by the result. How do we live our life? Do we think we can live anyway we want as long as we do something good.

  If we have faith we will depend on God to provide our direction. When we start to think that we know what is best then we start down the wrong road. Depending on God isnít easy because it means relinquishing control of our life to Him. Letting God have control means that we will have to stop living on our agenda and live on His.

  Let me challenge you this week to stop and ask God for His provision. Depend on God and He will lead you down the right road. The writer of Proverbs puts it this way;

Proverbs 3:5-6, Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.

  We should make every effort to honor God in the decisions we make. We should be ready to draw the line when we are asked to compromise our beliefs for success. We should learn that some things are not worth compromising our faith over. Make every effort to honor God in everything you do.
 

THOUGHTS FROM THE ROAD

  NOT A FAN - I sometimes get on my soapbox and say something that I think needs to be said. I am not a fan of racing on Easter Weekend. We have compromised too much in the name of our enjoyment. That does not serve God well. I understand the need to run races and get the season started. I just think there needs to be some times in our life that we say no.

  It was difficult for me to know that we had Chaplains away from home covering Saturday night races. They were there for the racers and the families but I think it would be better if God was put first and honored. Thank you to all of you who gave up time this past weekend to serve those in the racing community.

  I CAN SEE CLEARLY NOW THE RAIN IS GONE - After standing in the rain at two different tracks over the past four days, I donít think Iíll need to shower for a couple of weeks. Wet and damp are two words that donít go with racing and donít feel good when it describes what you are wearing. But we persevered. Plans changed and schedules were adjusted and in the end both races were run. Not necessarily under the best conditions, but we ran the race, persevered through the challenges and we can move forward with the schedule. I want to thank all of our dedicated personnel that remained flexible and made adjustments to their schedules this past weekend; we couldnít do it without you.

  A SPRING CLASSIC - With the threat of rain the Sizzler took on a new meaning, it wasnít a run some laps, get down to the last 50 and then run all out to the finish. This one sizzled from the green flag; they were racing to the 100 lap mark, just in case there was more rain to fall. That challenged teams to adjust their strategy and make decisions on the fly. In the end Bobby Santos rolled into victory lane after a side by side battle with Doug Coby. Rowan Pennink followed in third. Woody Pitkat raced to a fourth place finish despite not having low gear. That was not made any easier with several late race cautions. Justin Bonsignore rounded out the top five. The Whelen Modified Tour will be in action next right back at Stafford Motor Speedway on Memorial Day Weekend.

  I DIDNíT WIN THE MOST TRAVELED TITLE THIS PAST WEEKEND - I travel many miles and many hours to get to the different races I need to be at, but this past weekend I was outdone by K&N, Nationwide & Mexico Touring Series driver Daniel Suarez.

  Suarez competed Friday night at Richmond , hung around for the 9:00 am K&N race on Saturday and then traveled to Monterrey , Mexico to compete in the NMTS race where he has won three of the first four races. Suarez posted a top 20 in the Nationwide race, suffered electrical problems in the K&N race, not unexpected with all the fact that the cars sat outside, impounded, in the rain for hours and he won the NMTS race. He has set the bar high but I am up to the challenge, maybe I can do a Canada , America and Mexico triple. I am off to check the schedules!

  OHIO DOUBLE - While our NASCAR responsibilities take a break this week I am off to play in the dirt, Eldora on Friday and Sharon Speedway on Saturday is the plan right now. Iíll have my favorite race tourist with me, Howie Hodge to keep me focused on the road. Sometimes you just have to go to a race to watch!

 
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 http://www.rwjm.com/store. Send us your prayer and counseling needs no matter what part of our racing family you are in, or give us a call. 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
 


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SourceRev Don Rivers / Racing With Jesus Ministries
Posted: April 29, 2014

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