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by Susan LeDoux
9/19/2014 / Christian Living
Many years ago, my husband and I were involved with the Sports Car Club of America and we attended many a race in Watkins Glen, NY. One afternoon, I found myself standing next to the track where the formula cars were primed for the race to begin. When their engines simultaneously roared to life at the command, "Gentlemen, start your engines," it felt like the earth shook. I was awestruck at the sudden release of raw power as they screamed onto the track.
A negative comment someone recently made about the way some Christians behave made me think of those cars. Christianity, as it was designed by Jesus, is an all powerful vehicle to salvation. It goes far beyond every day, pedestrian "be a nice guy" philosophies. Established by God, this is the only way to win the race; the reason we exist in the first place.
But it seems we Christians are crashing our race cars, causing huge pileups and wreaking havoc in some situations. Makes you wonder about Christianity. Maybe it doesn't work any better than anything else. But before we ditch the car, let's consider something.
A person doesn't just climb into a formula car and take off without training. There are classes and learning resources to turn a sedan driver into a race car driver. This vehicle needs a specific blend of oil and gas as well as a skilled pit crew.
Perhaps our formula cars (Christianity) are crashing because the drivers (we Christians) do not study well. We don't do our homework or practice our techniques (read the Bible and apply it to our lives). Then we put in any old oil and whatever gas is available and expect the thing to run. I would suggest that the only fuel for a Christian is God's grace. Anything else, like my own efforts and merits or self help determination, will only clog an engine made to run on grace alone. On top of that, we race by the pit crew (our church family) that has the expertise to care for our cars and instead head for the local gas station where worldly philosophies flow through the pumps.
Like speedway racers, we Christians need to turn to our driver's manual (Bible) regularly; we need to use only the right fuel and be a part of and rely on, our pit crew. Even then, we have trouble keeping our car on track but at least we won't crash and create mayhem.
But for a really breathtaking race, place the Designer in the driver's seat and ride shotgun.
Susan LeDoux is a freelance Christian writer and reporter. She writes for a Christian magazine in New York State, "The Good News", for various ministries and her church. You can follow her blogs about faith, health, caregiving, and writing at her website, www.susanledoux.com
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