The 59th running of the Daytona 500 took place on Sunday with Kurt Busch pulling out the victory. Making a strategic pass on the final lap, the veteran driver won his first Daytona 500 on his 16th attempt. This was a big moment for Busch when you consider how he’s been on and off the track over the years. writer Joe Menzer wrote, “Busch left the 2.5-mile Superspeedway Sunday evening as a Daytona 500 champion, his transformation from a frequently troubled, often angry driver into something better, more at ease with himself and all his surroundings, seemingly complete.”

George Diaz from the Orlando Sentinel further explained, “Kurt then closed the deal, driving with blinders on after his rear-view mirror fell off with 30 laps to go. But all he needed to do was look ahead and zero in on the finish line.”

I have a tough enough time driving around town at 45 MPH with a rear-view mirror, so I can’t imagine winning a huge race like the Daytona 500 without one. Nonetheless, Kurt Busch remained focused by looking straight ahead toward the checkered flag.

His remarkable finish to this legendary race has come to symbolize what he’s also doing in life. Moving forward and not looking back. But what about you and me…are we going through life looking in the rear-view mirror with our eyes set on all of our regrets, mistakes, hurts, and disappointments?

Or are we looking straight ahead at the finish line where Jesus stands in victory? By receiving His grace and forgiveness, we no longer have to look back and dwell on our past, but instead we can “look ahead and zero in on the finish line.”

The Bible says in Philippians 3:13-14 (NLT), “No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”

Kurt Busch finally won the Daytona 500, and he did so by not looking back at his rear-view mirror. Today, let’s be encouraged to take a similar approach and let go of what’s behind us, so we can fully embrace victory in Jesus both now and for eternity.

I’m Bryce Johnson and you can unpack that!

PRAYER: Heavenly Father, thank you for the new life You’ve given me and the transformation that continues to take place. I pray that I would not dwell on who I used to be, but instead continue to look ahead toward Jesus. In His name I pray, Amen.