In the aftermath of recent events it is all too clear the uncertainty of
life. We are in the habit of looking ahead to future events with
anticipation and excitement. We do not know what the future holds. We need
to know who holds the future. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior,
My thoughts are with the families that mourn losses. The events of the
past week have a way of focusing our attention on the uncertainty of life.
Being involved with racing there is the ever present uncertainty of how
things will finish. The race must be run for before the checkered flag
When the checkered flag falls for us we do not know. We cannot predict
the future. If we knew when the end would come it would paralyze us and
prevent us from living each day. The difficulty is when the end comes
suddenly, unexpected, not at all the way we figured things would go.
The racing community deals with that as a real part of their lives. We
have been there when the checkered flag fell for someone at a time we didnít
expect. We know the suddenness and finality when life ends unexpectedly. But
we move on and remember.
We have learned from those times and made provisions to eliminate as many
risks as possible. Sometimes we get complacent or self-assured and think it
wonít happen to us. I remind you of the uncertainty of life.
This past week we have witnessed what happens when we donít learn, when
we donít address the underlying issue. We have had our hearts broken, our
attention raised, our fears confirmed. We have seen it in living color, the
depravity of man. Our society is breaking down before our very eyes. Are we
helpless to change this? Are we bystanders only here to observe? Can we turn
this steamroller around?
The answer is yes, we donít have to sit by and watch our world
self-destruct. We are all a part of the solution. We need to stand up and
speak out for what is right, just and honoring to God.
Mathew 5:13-15; 13
ď(We) are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its
Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as
14 ď(We) are the light of the worldólike a city on a hilltop that cannot be
15 No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket.
Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in
Life has been given to us by God and he has
instructed us to hold it in the highest regard. The events that surround us
demonstrate that we do not value life the way God would have us to. Life has
become something we disrespect, expendable, and many of us have determined
that we have the understanding to determine whose life should be ended. That
is wrong and an insult to the creator of life. We need to value what God
As I sat and reflected on these events thoughts come to mind, some
encouraging, some troubling. I know the positions on each side of the
argument. I have personal relationships with people that have been involved
on both sides of the issue. Both sides have a basis for their struggles. My
daughter Katie, a resident of New York City put it best.
ďComing back from vacation to a
reality that should not exist. A reality that hits way too close to home for
many people I love. A reality that can be rationalized by other people I
love. A reality that makes people I love get on their feet and protest down
the streets, a reality that other people I love try to avoid or deflect.
I am grateful that it is a reality I am angry about, that makes my heart
break, that makes me attempt to process what it would feel like to be in the
shoes of one of my black or brown friends, that makes me want to understand
more, that makes me compassionate and that make me want to do something to
However this reality hits you I pray God's grace and love will meet you
Thanks for the wise words Katie, love you.
I listened to a church member on Sunday morning share the real fear a
wife and mother of color has when her family leaves the home. Her husband
drove truck and would leave their South Carolina home at 3am only to be
stopped by the local law enforcement. His fear was that he might lose his
patience with the daily interrogation and say something that would be
construed as threatening. They finally had to go to the Chief of Police and
explain that he was going to work, where he worked and that if the daily
questioning didnít stop they would have to expose it. Every day her husband
went to work she feared for his life. This should not be.
I remember the way the racing community received GoGo, a man of color
from Haiti. I wasnít sure how a predominantly white community would welcome
him. I prepared him as best I could. To his credit he wanted to go and
experience racing first hand. He was welcomed with open arms, asked about
his country, shown respect and value that he hadnít received from the
general public. I was proud to be part of such a group that I call family.
But again GoGo had to endure the scrutiny of being different. He worked
nights and left the house around midnight. He would tell me of the many
times he was followed by a police car. He didnít understand it. I tried to
explain but there wasnít really any explanation that sounded right. I
encouraged him to be careful and cautious. That didnít prevent him from
being pulled over a few times.
On the other side I have very close friends in law enforcement and the
challenges they face every day is overwhelming to me. They face a reality
that I donít. They face a challenge that scares most of us. Here is how one
Officerís wife put it;
ďEvery morning I walk into our
closet and see these, my husband's police uniforms. Not many have these
hanging next to their jeans and dress shirts. He didn't choose to wear these
for the fame and fortune. He drives his old, hail-dented, hubcap-less,
duct-taped, Mitsubishi to the police station every day so I can drive "his"
newer truck. He hates coffee and writing tickets. He avoids donuts and
cussing. There is no typical day at work. His office is his police car, his
computer, inside it. Some days he comforts victims of sexual assault or
rape. Some days he gets in high-speed chases to catch a guy who shot and
killed a 9-month pregnant girl in the stomach. Some days he convinces
suicidal persons to keep on living. Some days he enters the stench of
trash-filled, bug-infested, drug dealer apartments to see 5 kids under the
age of 6 running around. Some days he gets fire ant bites from diving into
flash flood waters to save a family of 4 submerged in their vehicle. Some
days he jumps fences in foot chases. Some days he responds to domestic
disputes never sure if he might meet a gun to his face at the door. And some
days he rides his police bike and enjoys the random acts of kindness shone
to him and his police friends. He loves the kind words and paid-for lunches
by random strangers in restaurants. He always tells me about them. He has a
daughter who adores him and 2 sons who are so proud of him. He's called
Poppa and Pa Jason by his 2 grandchildren. He loves his giant dog Nala.
Sometimes I get mad at his clothes draped over the tub and his tote bag
lying on the bathroom floor with his police gun inside. Long ago, when he
worked deep nights, I would be awakened to the loud sound of Velcro being
detached as he removed his bulletproof vest and I'd be annoyed. Today, I'm
praying for those families not much unlike mine who wish they could hear
that Velcro sound again."
The fear on both sides is real and justifiable.
There is no one without blame. So where do we turn? Who will make a
difference? We must! Those that believe in God, those who have accepted
Jesus as their Lord and Savior. The responsibility falls to us in the
communities where we live and breathe. We have to demonstrate and embody the
things that honor God. We need to value life as most important. We need to
look upon each one as a creation of God and demonstrate His character; love,
joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and
self-control. There is no law against these actions.
His Word tells us that we are salt and light, we need to improve the
situation around us and shed light on the darkness. We need to stand up for
what is right and just in the eyes of God. That will not always make us
popular, but it will always keep us standing with God and standing when the
battle is over.
Evil will prevail if left unchecked. Man will self-destruct without
guidance. We as a people will perish if we forsake God and choose our own
direction. This isnít about self-preservation, this is about preserving what
we all have come to enjoy, Freedom. Make a commitment to stand with God
through the power of Christ and open our arms, move our feet, and embrace
the lives around us. Show the love that Jesus has for each of us. He loved
us so much He laid down his life for us. Amen.
Until next time, remember God loves you and Jesus is Lord over Auto
Racing! God Bless. Remember, that your prayerful support helps us continue
this ministry. Thank You.
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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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