Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Yesterday Dean and I went to see a film called Senna, a documentary about the legendary race car driver from Brazil. Quite a fascinating and moving story. Of course, filmmakers choose what bits of someone's life to showcase and what parts to leave out, but the overall sense was that we were seeing the man not only as a great racer, but as a man who had one passion and a remarkable instinct for it.
He spoke freely about God, read his bible regularly, was referred to as a humble man by his colleagues, and obviously loved his family and his country. The racing world was not always kind to him, yet he showed great restraint in how he dealt with those in his profession.
After he won one of his first Grand prix races, he recounted that near the finish line, he went into a kind of otherworldly zone. He felt the presence of God, a sense of peace. Dean leaned over to me halfway through the movie and said, "This was worship for him." And yes, in some ways it reminded me of Olympic runner Eric Liddell who said that he felt the pleasure of God when he ran.
The intersection of doing something we love, something we have a talent for, something that requires us to give all we are capable of and then some more, and the humble acknowledgment of our need for God in that very place - this is where the presence of God can often be found.
It made me look at my own life and wonder, what is that place for me? Where I have a desire to do well, a genuine instinct for something, where I bring everything I have to the table because nothing less will do. And most importantly, where I feel God's nearness and his pleasure. In this place, I am offering myself to him, I am receiving and giving a gift at the same time. I am a worshipper.
The photo: athletes hard at work at my university. Worship practice?
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