Voices from the Cheap Seats · Jeff Meyer · Friday August 17, 2012
NASCAR is one of the few entities left in this country that is not ashamed to actively honor God before each of it’s events. So unashamed, that even the invocation is televised before each race. I ask you; When is the last time you saw a televised prayer before a professional or college sporting event? You can’t remember if you ever have, can you?
Having established the precedent that God is actively recognized in our sport, I am going to share a bit of scripture with you. Why, you may ask? Simply because I am sick and tired of any number of people out there that continue to assert that NASCAR, Pocono Raceway or anyone else is responsible for the tragic events that followed the rain-shortened event a couple of weeks ago.
I also want to say that my personal thoughts and prayers are still with the ones that were injured and especially with the family of Brian Zimmerman, the gentleman that passed away. I had intended to make my “Top Ten” list that week a memorial to all involved but I was unable to obtain ALL the names of those injured so instead of offending anyone by leaving them out, I opted to shelve the idea for now.
As for the Bible passages below, they are taken from the NIV or New International Version. Look it up in the King James Version if you like a lot of ‘thee’s and ‘thou’s, but the gist is the same. I ask that you pay particular attention to verse 5 in the first passage (verse 1 is pretty succinct as well!) and well, pretty much all of the second passage.
Job 14: 1-2, 5
“Mortals, born of woman,
are of few days and full of trouble.
2 They spring up like flowers and wither away; like fleeting shadows, they do not endure.
5 A person’s days are determined; you have decreed the number of his months and have set limits he cannot exceed.
Job 37: 1-13
“At this my heart pounds
and leaps from its place.
2 Listen! Listen to the roar of his voice, to the rumbling that comes from his mouth.
3 He unleashes his lightning beneath the whole heaven and sends it to the ends of the earth.
4 After that comes the sound of his roar; he thunders with his majestic voice.
When his voice resounds, he holds nothing back.
5 God’s voice thunders in marvelous ways; he does great things beyond our understanding.
6 He says to the snow, ‘Fall on the earth,’ and to the rain shower, ‘Be a mighty downpour.’
7 So that everyone he has made may know his work, he stops all people from their labor.[a]
8 The animals take cover; they remain in their dens.
9 The tempest comes out from its chamber, the cold from the driving winds.
10 The breath of God produces ice, and the broad waters become frozen.
11 He loads the clouds with moisture; he scatters his lightning through them.
12 At his direction they swirl around over the face of the whole earth to do whatever he commands them.
13 He brings the clouds to punish people, or to water his earth and show his love.
Now, this may come off as callous to some, but the point is, when it comes to death, particularly at the hands of lightning, there is not a whole lot you can do about it.
Short of crawling into a cave, and even then, if God wants to get your attention He will, there just simply isn’t anything you can do to prevent it! There are just too many variables when it comes to death or ‘acts of God’.
What if that person had been a mere three or four people back in the line as they waited to pee? Perhaps if they had stopped to buy one more souvenir? Or what if anyone in any of the parties involved had, and the rest of the group had to wait one more minute for them?
Would they have still been struck?
These tragic events happened well after the track had warned fans of inclement weather and NASCAR had called the race.
And what of those folks that profess not to believe in God?
Can you not see for yourself that bad weather is closing in? Do you need to be told that lightning may be in the area and is dangerous? Can you not make your own decision as to if you should remain under shelter or start heading out into the parking lot (in this case) to your car? Is the track or NASCAR supposed to fence everyone in and restrain them against their will until ‘THEY’ deem it is safe?
Any one of a million little decisions or actions you make everyday, at any given moment can have the potential to change your, or your loved ones lives…but how do you know which ones? You don’t and you can’t.
In my opinion lightning, especially lightning, is the ultimate way of God trying to get your attention or saying that your time is up. You don’t have a choice in the matter.
The simplistic truth is, these recent events, while tragic and unfortunate, cannot be blamed on any one company’s actions and/or policies or any one person….unless you want to blame God.
If you do blame God, be sure to let me know how that works out for ya!
Stay off the wall, (especially if it is storming!)
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