Sandwiched in between Mother’s Day and Memorial Day is the day we remember those who currently serve us in the Armed Forces. The third Saturday in May is Armed Forces Day. I mention this because it was a day that Rev. Pat didn’t forget. Long before it became popular he remembered to pray for those who serve us in the armed forces. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Every day in every corner of the world men and women have set their lives aside to protect the freedoms that we enjoy. They have put their families on hold. They have missed birthdays, weddings, births and deaths. Why, to serve us. They go to defend our right to freedom; to defend our right to go to the track of our choice and enjoy racing; to defend our right to say whatever we want; to defend our right to protest; to defend our right to vote and have a say in how this country is run.
America is still the greatest nation on the earth because of these men and women. People from around the world still want to come here because of the freedoms we enjoy. We need to appreciate what we have been given and recognize those who sacrifice in service to maintain it. Don’t be guilty of complacency; let them know you are thankful for their sacrifice.
I ask that on Saturday you say thank you, if you see a uniformed serviceman or woman don’t be shy about walking up to them and extending a hand in friendship. Thank them for the sacrifice they are making on our behalf.
Galatians 5:13-14, (NLT), For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love. For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
Speaking of uniforms, have we looked in a mirror lately? Have we looked at the clothes we wear, the cars we drive and the billboards we display for the world to see. What message do we send to those who are watching what we do?
It is no secret who we represent when we go to the track. In fact it is advantageous to our sponsors for everyone to know who supports our racing teams. We wear their name on our sleeve, for the world to see.
Have you ever thought about what that communicates to others? Our sponsors say a lot about who we are. Sometimes I wonder if we are willing to compromise what we believe in order to secure a sponsor. Our sponsors represent the people we choose to serve.
I am thankful to those of you who support this ministry and give us the freedom to do what God leads us to do. They’re our sponsors and they allow us to share the message of Good News.
We communicate so many things by what we wear and how we act. People see who we are by how we respond to situations around us. Are we viewed as fair and rational or do people see us as hot heads? It makes a difference when people are searching for help; some of us are attractive and others are avoided.
We can get so caught up in our life that we forget that others are searching and need help. I received something the other day and it made me think about how many times I have been so caught up in my own life that I forgot to notice those around me.
A young and successful executive was traveling down a neighborhood street, going a bit too fast in his new Jaguar. He was watching for kids darting out from between parked cars and slowed down when he thought he saw something. As his car passed, no children appeared. Instead, a brick smashed into the Jag’s side door! He slammed on the brakes and backed up the Jag to the spot where the brick had been thrown. Now angry he jumped out of the car, grabbed the nearest kid and pushed him up against a parked car shouting, “What was that all about and who are you? Just what the heck are you doing? That’s a new car and that brick you threw is going to cost me a lot of money to fix. Why did you do it?”
The young boy was apologetic. “Please, mister…please, I’m sorry but I didn’t know what else to do,” He pleaded. “I threw the brick because no one else would stop…” With tears dripping down his face and off his chin, the youth pointed to a spot just around a parked car. “It’s my brother,” he said “He rolled off the curb and fell out of his wheelchair and I can’t lift him up.”
Now sobbing, the boy asked the stunned executive, “Would you please help me get him back into his wheelchair? He’s hurt and he’s too heavy for me.” Moved beyond words, the driver tried to swallow the rapidly swelling lump in his throat. He hurriedly lifted the handicapped boy back into the wheelchair, then took out a linen handkerchief and dabbed at the fresh scrapes and cuts. A quick look told him everything was going to be okay.
“Thank you and may God bless you,” the grateful child told the stranger.
Too shook up for words, the man simply watched the boy push his wheelchair-bound brother down the sidewalk toward their home. It was a long, slow walk back to the Jaguar. The damage was very noticeable, but the driver never bothered to repair the dented side door. He kept the dent there to remind him of this message:
“Don’t go through life so fast that someone has to throw a brick at you to get your attention!” God whispers in our souls and speaks to our hearts. Sometimes when we think we don’t have time to listen and He has to throw a brick at us.
Have you seen all the bricks flying around lately? Many times we are unaware of our surroundings. We get caught up in our own world and we overlook what might be happening in someone else’s life.
1 Peter 4:10-11, (NLT), God has given each of you a gift from his great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another. Do you have the gift of speaking? Then speak as though God himself were speaking through you. Do you have the gift of helping others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies. Then everything you do will bring glory to God through Jesus Christ. All glory and power to him forever and ever! Amen.
How are we dressed today? Are we dressed to serve? I would hope that we are dressed to serve God no matter what the task might be. I would hope that our actions match God’s word and honor His name. Think about what others see in us. Think about what they should see. Don’t make the mistake of getting so caught up in our own world that God needs to throw a brick at us to get our attention.
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.