by James Reine/ May 4, 2023
I would get a flat tire about once every 4 bike rides when I first started road biking. The first flat, I was unprepared with tools. The second, I was unprepared with skill. By the seventh or eighth, I became really good at fixing flats. It was still very inconvenient and costly to keep getting flat tires while biking so I began to research. I soon discovered that I wasn’t properly airing the tires.
I was airing up the tires to what FELT GOOD. I would squeeze the tire and determine it was suitable based solely on my perception. After buying an air pump with a gauge I realized I was only inflating my tires to 30 psi when I should have been filling it to 100psi. As soon as I made this change, flat tires were the rare occurrence, not the norm. Now, before every ride, I check my tire pressure by an actual gauge and not by feeling.
It is easy to continue to live life as a Christian by what feels right. It’s easy to only pray or read my Bible when it feels right. Go to church, serve, tell about Jesus, or even make moral decisions when it feels right. The problem with this way of living is that you are more susceptible to “flat tires.”You might get to the point where you live like this for so long that you get really good at repairing “flat tires” when they happen. A prayer night, a conference, an altar experience, or a revival service can all be ways in which we become good at repairing “flat tires.” It’s good but it’s not sustainable.
“Flat tires” should not be the norm. They will inevitably happen but it should not be the norm. We can live a much more effective life as a Christian when we are living by what the Bible says rather than what we feel. The Bible is the air pump with the gauge; it shows us exactly what we need in order to live a fulfilled life with fewer flat tires.
I have to pump up my tires BEFORE each ride because the atmosphere around my bike causes the tires to deflate just a little bit. That little bit of deflation can lead to a flat. I need God’s word daily because I live in an imperfect atmosphere in which my “tires” deflate over time. The more full I am from God’s word, the less I base my walk with God on feeling, and the more effective I am as a believer to those I lead.