"I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should."

I Cor. 9:27 (NLT)

Michigan International Speedway saw an abnormal number of caution flags Sunday. Most of them were from debris on the track. Leading seventy-three laps, Greg Biffle claimed his second career cup victory. Mark Martin came in second a little over eight seconds behind Biffle. Because of engine troubles, Jimmy Johnson found himself in the garage early for the third week in a row. That led him to give up first place in the points standing to his teammate and car owner Jeff Gordon.

A new comer to the Cup race at MIS was Carl Edwards. Carl, who is currently #4 in the Craftsman Truck series points has completely bypassed the training ground of the Busch cars and signed through 2005 to drive the Roush car that Jeff Burton has driven for several years. Most young men spend at least a year in the Busch Series before joining the elite of NASCAR in the Cup Series. But the smiling face of Carl Edwards who became known for his backward flips following a victory in his #99 Craftsman truck will apparently now be seen regularly in the #99 Roush Cup car.

It seems to be a big leap but Roush says the car is fully sponsored for 2005 and even though Edwards does not have that much Cup seat time they plan to go forth immediately. Most fans are tickled that he will be given this most unusual opportunity, and believe he will fulfill Jack Roush's goals for him. Finishing tenth in his first Cup race was certainly a good beginning for this 25 year old who just a little over a year ago was living in his mother's basement, waiting to get his start in this very competitive sport. Persistence and perseverance are now reaping rewards for Carl Edwards.

Those same two words, persistence and perseverance, can be invaluable tools in your life too. Winning a NASCAR race always requires discipline. The Christian life is also hard work with some self-denial and a lot of arduous preparation.

Has God called you to a particular ministry for Him?

If so, you will find that the disciplines of prayer, Bible study and worship are required for you to meet that goal. Don't be a fan and watch from the grandstand. Commit to whatever special duties your ministry requires and then run with endurance and stamina as you seek to attain the goal God has given you.

Carl Edwards has trained diligently in the truck series and is now ready to accept a NASCAR Cup ride. He has the possibility of someday becoming a NASCAR Cup Champion.

Accept Jesus Christ as your personal Savior and then submit yourself to run with persistence and perseverance the race of life God calls you to do. Your Heavenly Father's reward for you will be eternal and imperishable.

Melva Cooper, Copyright 2004
Used with permission.