Suddenly the air cleared and Ricky could see where he was headed. Somehow he had veered off the dirt track and over the edge of a hill. He was flying down a hill toward a garbage dumpster! “A-a-a-a-h-h-h!” In a split second, Ricky decided what to do. He whipped the steering wheel to the right and slammed on the brakes. He just managed to slide around the big metal dumpster. “Whew! What a relief,” he thought. “I sure am glad I didn’t hit that dumpster. That’s two narrow escapes in one day! Wait till I tell dad!”
Ricky got out of the go-cart and walked back up the hill. While he had been driving, his dad had been watching from the stands. But when Ricky got to the top of the hill, his dad didn’t look at all concerned. He was deep in conversation with another man. In fact, his dad was so immersed in the conversation, that he didn’t even notice Ricky walking toward them. That made Ricky feel kinda bad. “Wasn’t dad even worried about me?” he thought. “I could have crashed into that dumpster and been hurt pretty bad.” But as he got closer Ricky’s thoughts turned from frustration to wonder. What was his dad talking about? Who was that man?
Ricky’s father seemed very interested in a small book the other man was holding. Every so often, the man would point to something in it and then talk to his dad. His dad seemed very interested. But when Ricky finally walked up, the conversation was coming to an end. He saw the man hand his dad the little book and say, “Dan this is a very serious subject. I hope you’ll take the time to read this book and consider what it says. You may not realize it now, but this is a matter of life and death.”
Just then both men noticed Ricky walking up. “Oh, hello, Ricky. I was wondering where you had gone to,” said his dad. Then looking at his son’s inquisitive look, he said, “Let me introduce to you an old friend of mine from high school. This is Sammy… er… uh… Pastor Phillips.” Ricky forced a smile and then shook hands with the smiling man. “Ricky, this is such a coincidence. Remember that yellow church bus that stopped in front of our house, and the man who invited you to that children’s program? Pastor Phillips is the pastor of that church! This is such a coincidence.”
Ricky wasn’t really interested, but he could see that his dad was. He supposed that it would be nice for his dad to meet an old friend, but he really wanted to get his go-cart back up and running. “Dad, I’ve had another accident.” Both men listened carefully as he told the story of his dusty trip down the hill. “Are you alright, Ricky?” said Pastor Phillips. “Yes, I’m alright. But my go-cart’s stuck at the bottom of a hill and I almost hit the dumpster!” The two men followed Ricky to the bottom of the hill and helped him drag the go-cart back toward the track. As they pushed it up the hill, Pastor Phillips said something that caught Ricky’s attention.
“Ricky, what happened to you today reminds me about something in the Bible.” “Really? You mean they had go-carts when the Bible was written?” asked Ricky. “Not quite, Ricky. I was thinking more of you being lost in the dust storm and not knowing where you were going. A lot of people are running around trying to find the way to God. But they don’t know where they’re going or how to get there. Jesus said, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.’ Unfortunately, some people never figure that out.” Ricky thought about that as the pastor continued. “We’re having a special Vacation Bible School program for children your age. We’ll be talking about what the Bible says about The Race of Your Life. Would you like to go to it tomorrow?”
It was a tough decision for Ricky. The program sounded interesting, but he really wanted to do some more work on his go-cart. What should he do? Before he could answer the pastor’s question, Ricky’s dad yelled. “Watch out!” Something was wrong. What was it? You may never know unless you come back next time to find out.