Saturday, February 11, 2012

Buying tires

"…and character produces hope…" -Romans 5:4

OK, get ready for, “Tire buying 101.” First of all, buying tires is not a pleasant experience. It’s necessary, but equivalent to getting a new roof or a crown at the dentist. For a lot of money we seemingly don't get much. Rarely does anyone comment, “Hey, nice new tires” or “Wow, I love your new crown.” But tires are absolutely necessary for the safety of a car. Nothing else matters if what we’re riding on isn't safe. And nothing else matters if we don't have a solid foundation for our lives.

Tonight, I’m cheering for LSU against Alabama in basketball. I just heard that four Bama players were suspended indefinitely for breaking team rules. The coach didn't give specifics, but he explained by saying, “Talent is a gift, but character is a choice.” I think that means the players made a poor choice. Foundational issues of life are always a choice. We aren’t born with a foundation. Character is a by-product of what we’re “riding” on. This foundation is stored in the heart and rarely does anyone comment on our heart, but it’s the key to stability in life.

A few weeks ago, I went searching for tires. The tread on our car’s tires was wearing thin. I researched the Internet and called several dealers. There are hundreds of variations of tires and it took me a while to narrow down the brand and style. The main issue is price. Tires can be bought anywhere from $50 dollars to $300 a piece. And with tires especially, you “get what you pay for.” Good tires cost more and last longer than less expensive tires. Being people of character comes with a cost too. It’s easier to be selfish and “I” centered. Choosing to have character and faith may be the more difficult choice, but in the end, it brings true peace.

So, I drove north to Springfield and had four new tires put on the car. I definitely paid more than I wanted, but they are excellent tires. Good tires last a lot longer, drive better through adverse conditions, and increase the stability of the car.

All tires have a “tire rating.” The rating determines how many miles the tire can be expected to last. Good tires might have a 50,000-mile rating while less expensive tires may have a lot less. Simply put, better tires are built better. And people who have solid character are people that last.

Good tires have a better tread pattern that allows them to work well in rain and snow. They not only last longer but work better in the midst of the storm. When adversity hits, people of character are able to persevere in the midst of the trial.

Better tires are more stable than cheaper tires. The braking distance and cornering ability increase as the quality of the tires increases. People of character exhibit more self-control in their lives. In decision-making and encounters with people, they show wisdom and maturity.

Of course, true character only comes through a personal relationship with the God of the Universe, through His Son Jesus. He designed us and created us and there is no better source of peace and stability than walking with God on every journey. We have the ability to walk with God because of the tremendous price paid by Jesus on the Cross.

Choose character through faith and you’ll be riding on a true solid foundation, whether anyone notices are not.

By Eric Joseph Staples ©

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