66 races. That’s an eternity in NASCAR. That’s how many races Jeff Gordon drove since his last victory. He won in Pheonix on Sunday. It’s almost hard to believe. The four-time champion who used to dominate the field went just about two years between victories. I can only imagine the elation he feels. As I consider 66 races without a win, I find myself appreciating Jeff’s faithfulness to do his best each and every week. The same could be said of most–if not all–NASCAR drivers. They all want to win, and each is doing whatever possible to finish first in points. I watched a sermon on Sunday by Mark Driscoll. The text was Luke 14:25-35. The topic was the cost of discipleship. His repeated message to his congregation was, “Don’t quit.” We have all known individuals who have seemingly begun the Christian life, only to give up when “the going gets tough.” In the parable of the sower, Jesus describes such people as seed either thrown on a rock or amidst thorns (Lk. 8:6,7). There are quitters and there are finishers in the Christian life. Which are you? I personally believe that the reason we have seen so many quitters is due to the easy-believism propagated too long by the American church (Driscoll makes this point as well). Evangelists, pastors and teachers have not preached the complete gospel message. Faith is crucial, but genuine faith is a faith which continues. Repentance is necessary, but genuine repentance is a repentance which remains. Coming to Christ in both faith and repentance is required for salvation, but abiding in Christ is just as important. These truths were reborn in the Protestant Reformation and continue to be stressed by those who rightly divide the Word of truth. I am thankful today for my pastor and for the authors and pastors who have encouraged me to live out Hebrews 12:1-4 (“let us run with perseverance“). I am also grateful for the “great cloud of witnesses” who ran the race to its completion before me, and those still running this very day! Jeff Gordon didn’t quit. I don’t want to quit, either. Don’t let me!
Reflections on the Quest: Jeff Gordon Didn’t Quit