Appreciating the Rules

In NASCAR garage areas, it is not uncommon to hear comments like, “If you aren’t cheating, you aren’t trying” and “It’s our job to cheat and it’s their (NASCAR’s) job to catch us.” This weekend, as NASCAR’s top series headed to Kentucky for the Quaker State 400, we were reminded why it is so tempting to flirt with gray areas or to straight-out violate the NASCAR rulebook. In a sport where the margin of victory, or even the difference between qualifying for the race and going home, can be measured in thousandths of a second, there is tremendous pressure to find that extra little bit of help to make your car better—no matter how stiff the penalties might be. Everyone is looking for an edge.

In life, we are also tempted to cut corners and test boundaries if we think it might give us an advantage, even in spiritual matters. What the Bible gives us as spiritual guidelines for wise decisions, however, are there for our benefit. God is not a cosmic spoilsport looking for ways to rain on our proverbial parade—He seeks our very best. He knows where the dangers are and knows how prone we are to be drawn that way. That is, in part, why God has given us His Word, the Bible. In the wisdom of the Bible, we can find guidance for our future and strength for our lives. It is so much more than just a rulebook. As the psalmist wrote of God’s Word, “Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Psalm 119:105). We just need to trust the wisdom of God that is given to us in His Book, and seek His help in applying it to our lives. No gray area can ever compare to the life-changing wisdom of the Bible.

 

Bill Crowder, Sports Spectrum Chaplain