7 Examples of How Auto Racing Teaches Great Life Lessons
I love motor sports, especially NASCAR. The roar of an internal combustion engine that can I can hear all the way down in my chest. The aromatic smell of burnt racing fuel mixed with tire rubber. Ah…the great outdoors.
It is March and the NASCAR season is just getting started. This caused me to think about how life is like racing. Even if you aren’t a race fan I think you’ll appreciate the similarities in racing and life.
1. Life goes by like a car at 200 MPH –
It is common to have a conversation about how fast time goes by or how much of what we had planned didn’t get done. Just like in a race if we don’t ease up on the accelerator going into a corner, it’s likely there will be a crash. The same thing is true in life. We need to know when to stop pushing so hard.
2. You need the help and support of a pit crew –
None of us can go through life without the help of others. Sure, some people are more ‘hermit’ than others, but even they need help and support if they want to win the race. We race much better and faster when we have someone else putting fuel in and changing the tires. Our pit stops would be a lot slower if we had to get out and do it ourselves and not as much fun either.
3. The importance of a pit stop for refueling and fresh tires –
When someone loves what they do as much as I do, it can be hard to slow down long enough to take a pit stop. I just want to keep driving and driving. We’re made in God’s image and His plan is to stop every seventh lap for tires and fuel. If we don’t take some breaks, eventually we run out of fuel and we can’t win our race that way.
4. Every driver has their own individual driving style –
Some drivers are aggressive, some are more patient. Different styles work better at different times in different races on different tracks. The important thing is to know your style, how it works and when to use it. Often people don’t take the time to understand their own strengths and weaknesses and how they can help or hurt in the race of life.
5. There are different tracks throughout the racing season –
The NASCAR season is made up of a variety of sizes, styles and configurations of tracks. Life is also full of different and changing situations. Sometimes we find ourselves on a high banked, high speed superspeedway. Other times we are on a short, tight track where there is a lot of bumping and banging. Or maybe it is a slower, winding, right and left turning road course. The important thing is to excel at the times in life where we are good and to survive the others.
6. Being aware of the clock –
Time is speed, but speed is not always the fastest time. There have been many times when I have seen drivers slow down their MPH and have ran a faster time. This seems counter to what one would expect. In these cases, what happens is that the car isn’t sliding through corners as much. This same thing can happen to us. Sometimes if we slow down a little we are more productive.
7. Sometimes wrecks are our fault and sometimes we get caught up in someone else’s –
When there are thirty or forty cars all on the same race track it is inevitable that cars are going to wreck. Whether it is a mechanical problem or a driver’s error, it is going to happen. In life the same thing can be expected. Sometimes we are going to make mistakes that will cause us and maybe other people damage. Because we aren’t on the track alone, sometimes we find ourselves in a situation that is no fault of our own.
In Hebrews 12:1, we are encouraged to follow Jesus’ and other great people’s examples, to “…run the race that is before us and never quit. We should remove from our lives anything that would slow us down and the sin that so often makes us fall.”, ERV.
Run your race well.