Recently I had the amazing opportunity to drive a 600 horsepower NASCAR stock car on the Pocono Raceway, a birthday gift from my wife, Deb. Being a lifelong follower of the sport, this was an amazing opportunity. And to share the day with my son, John, made it even more special.

We began the day with classroom instruction about the car and track. While these are called “stock cars” they are specially constructed race cars. They may look like your street car, but that’s as far as the resemblance goes. After training, we were fitted with a fireproof driver’s suit and helmet. Then we were matched with a car and a pit road helper who would help us get in, buckle up, go over the controls, and give us our final instructions. I told my helper that I wasn’t afraid of driving the car, but getting my 72-year-old overweight body in the window (no doors!), had me petrified! He smiled and said, “We’ll get you in!” And he did.

Once on the track, we were instructed to follow the professional driver ahead of us. “Keep four car lengths between cars. Follow exactly in his tire tracks. Go wherever he goes on the track!” Each lap then, as you got comfortable, you would go faster. I had to “unlearn” what my head wanted to tell me. When you are flying down the straightaway at 130 mph and approaching the turn, everything in me wants to get off the gas and hit the brakes! But these cars are designed for this and will easily go through these corners with barely feathering the gas! Stay in the tire tracks! It was an exhilarating experience!

But the Spiritual application was easily seen. There are many pressures in this world to get our attention off Christ and the Word and go this way or that! “This will make you truly happy!” This is the way to true success!” “Here’s the real truth!” But as followers of Christ we must keep our eyes on Jesus and “stay in the tire tracks” of the Word. This is the way to abundant life in Christ. Too many people, cultures, and, sadly, churches, want to do it their way. “They think they know better—crashes result, bringing unhappiness, heartbreak, pain, suffering, and a sense of being lost. God warned Israel when He gave them His Law: “Do not turn aside from any of the commands I give you today, to the right or the left, following other gods and serving them.” Deuteronomy 28:14 NIV

And the Lord God calls us, “Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author, and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:2 NIV

Brethren, stay in the tire tracks of Christ and His unchanging Word!

Executive Board member, Larry M. Dentler