If you look in the book of Ephesians one of the things you will find out about is being part of the team. What does it take to be a part of the team? There are many that want to be on the team but only a few become members. What qualifies you to be on the team? Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Being a part of a team is a great honor. When that team is a winning team it makes it even more special. In my walks around the pit area at tracks I visit and see people who want to belong. People that want to be a part of something. Many are willing to make sacrifices; time, money, social life, etc., for the opportunity to be a part of something bigger than themselves. Those that make those sacrifices are bonded together in what we refer to as The Racing Family.

What do we need to belong to this team? A few things come to mind; one we need to have a high level of commitment. Have you ever had a team member you couldn’t count on? It is difficult to work with isn’t it? I think more than anything else people are looking for others to be committed, not just participate. You must be willing to put everything you have into it.

I am reminded of the chicken and the pig. When it came time to be a part of the breakfast team, the chicken participated but the pig was committed. You see the chicken gave the eggs, just a portion of what it had and it didn’t require her life. The pig on the other hand gave his life to provide the bacon. Are we just participating or are we committed?

Most everything we value in a team member is based on their performance and knowledge. They need to know what they are doing and do it. There is another way. Those with the right level of commitment can learn what they need to know. If they are willing to put in the effort they will find a home on the team. Their value to the team is based on their level of commitment and their willingness to sacrifice.

What about God’s team? Did you know that you cannot earn your way onto God’s team? That’s right; God doesn’t base our value on our performance. We cannot do enough good things to earn our way onto God’s team. It sounds strange because it is so foreign to us. How come we can’t be good enough to be on God’s team?

First off, God is perfect; there is no error in his way. We on the other hand are not perfect, you know it and so do I. So how do we get on board? For us to be present before God there has to be something that covers our imperfections. To be a part of God’s team it doesn’t matter what you know, it matters who you know. Do you know Jesus Christ?

Jesus made the sacrifice necessary for us to be part of God’s team. Jesus covered our shortcoming, our imperfections, our transgressions and our sin. God chose to allow for Christ’s sacrifice to be substituted for our inability to perform well enough to join His team. God gave us that gift and allowed us to become one with Christ. It is not something we can do for ourselves. Here is how Paul explains it for us.

Ephesians 2:8-10; For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God– not by works, so that no one can boast.  For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

God cared enough for you and me to give us the gift of salvation through his son Jesus Christ. A gift you cannot earn but a gift that will change your life. Think about what it cost Christ to provide the opportunity for you to know God.

Getting on God’s team is different than man’s team but once there work needs to be done. Look at this verse. God provides us the gift of grace, unmerited favor. It goes on to say that you cannot earn your way on the team, you only need to accept the gift provided. Sometimes that is hard for us to accept. We think we need to do something or pay a price. Christ paid that price for us.

We also read that this team has tasks to do. God has laid out a plan for each of our lives. His plan is a good one and will lead us to be a productive member of His team. It will cost you something though. You have to do it God’s way. We don’t become a member of God’s team and then do what we want to. God’s plan will transform our lives and change the way we see things, His plan will allow us to live the best life possible. We don’t need to know how or why, we only need to trust God and He will provide the direction for us.

Team means that we are all working together for the same goal. If we are on God’s team the Holy Spirit guides us. He will show us God’s plan. Like a crew chief, he will lay out the things that need to be done and we need to follow.

Listen to the words of Peter as he talks about the physical sacrifice we need to make for God. Peter helps us understand that accepting God’s gift leads to a spiritual and physical change. We will look different to others.

1 Peter 4:1-5 NLT, So then, since Christ suffered physical pain, you must arm yourselves with the same attitude he had, and be ready to suffer, too. For if you have suffered physically for Christ, you have finished with sin.  You won’t spend the rest of your lives chasing your own desires, but you will be anxious to do the will of God. You have had enough in the past of the evil things that godless people enjoy—their immorality and lust, their feasting and drunkenness and wild parties, and their terrible worship of idols.

Of course, your former friends are surprised when you no longer plunge into the flood of wild and destructive things they do. So they slander you. But remember that they will have to face God, who will judge everyone, both the living and the dead.

Just as Christ gave up his life, we also need to be willing to do the same. Remember the pig, he was committed. The amazing thing is that to be on God’s team no prior knowledge is required. We need only to accept the offer God makes to join Him. We need to commit ourselves to follow His lead. Yes, it will mean that there will be changes in our lives, physical and spiritual. Yes, some folks won’t understand and make fun of us. The reality is that there is no other way to have a satisfying and fulfilling life. We cannot do enough good things to earn our way onto God’s team. It is a gift we need to accept.

Are you ready to unite yourself with God’s team? Remember it is not what you know but who you know. Make that decision now, don’t put it off. Just pause for a moment and ask God to come into your life. Ask Him to forgive you for your shortcomings and accept the sacrifice that Christ made for your forgiveness. That is all it takes to receive the gift of life.

If you do, share that with us and we will help you find God’s plan for your life. Remember the promise God made through the prophet Jeremiah;

Jeremiah 29:11-13; NLT, For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen. If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me.

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.