GENTLEMEN START YOUR ENGINES.

CHARIOT RACING WAS A SPORT FOR BOTH THE DRIVERS AND THE SPECTATORS FOR THE ANCIENT ROMANS, GREEKS AND EGYPTIANS. PEOPLE TODAY GATHER TO WATCH ALL FORMS OF RACING. FROM MARATHONS WHERE THOUSANDS RUN A COURSE, TO SPEED BOATS AND SAIL BOATS, TO HORSE RACING AROUND THE WORLD, TO AUTOMOBILES RACES FROM BAJA TO DAYTONA, WE GATHER TO WATCH AND CHEER FOR THE WINNER. NO OTHER RACE SEEMS TO DRAW THE ENTHUSIASM OF CARS RACING. FROM THE TIME THE AUTOMOBILE WAS INVENTED, THERE HAS BEEN A DESIRE TO PRODUCE THE FASTEST CAR.

BEFORE EACH RACE, THERE HAS BEEN A TRADITION OF THE ANNOUNCER PROCLAIMING: “GENTLEMEN, START YOUR ENGINES!” THE CROWDS WILDLY CHEER IN ANTICIPATION. IN A SHORT TIME A WINNER WILL BE PRESENTED A TROPHY AND POSSIBLY A LARGE SUM OF MONEY. OF THE DOZENS IN THE RACE, ONLY ONE WILL WIN. OF ALL THE COMPETITION, ONLY ONE WILL BE REMEMBERED BY THE MASSES. WITHIN DAYS, NO ONE WILL REMEMBER THE ONE WHO CAME IN 3RD PLACE, MUCH LESS THE ONE WHO CAME IN LAST PLACE.

HOW ABOUT YOUR RACE? EACH DAY YOU RUN A RACE. WHICH PLACE WILL YOU COME IN…FIRST OR LAST? FIRST PLACE IN OUR SOCIETY IS VERY DIFFERENT THAN BEING IN FIRST PLACE WITH GOD. ARE YOU IN A RACE WITH SOCIETY TO MAKE THE MOST MONEY, HAVE THE BIGGEST HOUSE OR THE FASTEST CAR? INSTEAD, HOW ABOUT BEING IN A RACE TO BE THE BEST CHRISTIAN YOU CAN BE? NO, IT IS NOT A COMPARISON TO OTHERS OF BEING BETTER THAN SOMEONE ELSE. THE MEASUREMENT COMES FROM GOD. WINNING THE RACE IS PLEASING GOD; GOODNESS OVER EVIL, WALKING THE WALK, NOT JUST TALKING THE TALK.

WHEN YOUR LIFE IS OVER AND YOU CROSS THE FINISH LINE, WILL GOD TELL YOU THAT YOU WON THE RACE?

GET READY…DID YOU JUST HEAR GOD TELLING YOU TO ‘START YOUR ENGINE’? TODAY IS YOUR DAY TO WIN THE RACE!

“THEREFORE, SINCE WE ARE SURROUNDED BY SUCH A GREAT CLOUD OF WITNESSES, LET US THROW OFF EVERYTHING THAT HINDERS AND THE SIN THAT SO ENTANGLES. AND LET US RUN WITH PERSEVERANCE THE RACE MARKED OUT FOR US, FIXING OUR EYES ON JESUS, THE PIONEER AND PERFECTER OF FAITH. FOR THE JOY SET BEFORE HIM HE ENDURED THE CROSS, SCORNING ITS SHAME, AND SAT DOWN AT THE RIGHT HAND OF THE THRONE OF GOD.” HEBREWS 12:1-2 NIV