I caught the end of the Coke Zero 400 Saturday night, and witnessed the drama of multiple wrecks and restarts leading up to an overtime win for Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

Before the final lap started, the NBC broadcast was able to get audio from David Ragan, who was starting overtime out in front.

His crew chief asked, “Does the 17 want to help” and Ragan responded, “Sure he’ll say he’ll help. That’s pretty much the best shot we’ve got. As long as he’ll push us, I think that’s our best bet.”

With the 17 car being driven by Ricky Stenhouse Jr., and both of them driving Ford cars, knowing that Stenhouse Jr. was willing to help Ragan sounded good to hear.

But one of the NBC commentators responded, “I personally think that means nothing, I think it’s driver vs. driver at this point.”

He went on to explain that a driver is going to say whatever the other guy wants to hear, but the reality is the driver willing to push wants to win too. Even if he says he’ll help, he most likely wants the victory for himself.

This is a crazy situation and everything happens so quickly. Some drivers do follow through with the push needed, but in this race, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. saw an opportunity and took it.

By taking advantage of David Ragan making the wrong move on the final lap, he was able to go around him and secure the win…with Ragan finishing 6th.

It’s always tricky in sports when individual accomplishments and teamwork are both at play, but I’m sure most of us understand the position Stenhouse Jr. was in and don’t really fault him.

Even so, his initial “willingness to help” with a push came across pretty hollow following the race.

Unfortunately, “Sure he’ll say he’ll help” is also a common phrase in our own lives. We’re either the ones saying it or someone is saying it about us. All too often, however, these words “mean nothing” and are only said because we know others want to hear them.

Whether we say we’ll help a friend move, take care of a family member’s kids, serve at church, or do the dishes for our spouse, there isn’t always follow through. If something that benefits us gets in the way, we can easily choose our own victory.

As followers of Jesus, our desire to serve should be genuine and our follow through should be trustworthy. When we say we’re going to do something, we need to do our best to make sure it happens.

Our integrity and honesty should shine through when we communicate whether or not we can truly help.

Matthew 5:37 (NLT) tells us, “Just say a simple, ‘Yes, I will,’ or ‘No, I won’t.’ Anything beyond this is from the evil one.”

Romans 12:13 (NLT) encourages us with these words: “When God’s people are in need, be ready to help them. Always be eager to practice hospitality.”

Today, let’s put aside our own wins and actually help when we say we will. When someone needs a “push,” let’s follow through and give it to them. I’m Bryce Johnson and you can unpack that!

PRAYER: Heavenly Father, I desire to be trustworthy and honest, and confess there are times when I don’t come through like I said I would. Please help me make my words clear, and give me strength to live up to what I say. Thank you for the grace You provide when I let people down. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.