I just finished a book by Garth Stein called “The Art of Racing in the Rain”. Neat little story about a guy in Seattle who aspires to be a racecar driver. The main character’s prime skill is his ability to race at full speed in wet weather. Hence the Seattle connection. The whole book is told from the perspective of Enzo, his dog.
If you can get past the fact that the author believes in reincarnation, and that the dog’s #1 hope is that in his next life he will come back as a man, (obviously the author doesn’t realize that when good companion dogs die, they get an “E” ticket straight to Jesus) it is a great little read.
One of the underlying themes is the fact that in racing, “the car goes where you look”. This is definitely true. They tell you in racing school that if there is a crash ahead, focus on the location of the crash and aim for it. By the time you get there, it will be gone. If you focus on the wall next to it, you will hit the wall. Every time.
Two other themes in the book are related to not fixating on what has happened, but rather what you WANT to happen, and being relaxed and operating out of a place of calm control. (Again, secular author….so close).
In the book of Galatians, Paul talked about focusing on the fruits of the Spirit. Peace, joy, gentleness, self control. Against these, there is no law. He admonished them over and over, don’t focus on the law. It had its place, it was of value, but it is time to grow past it.
Reading Galatians, I can’t help but think of how Paul tried to tell the Galatian believers (and by extension-us) that if we would only focus on God, and operate out of the strength He gives us, the race will take care of itself.