Deflated But Not Defeated

​Paulette Reed

While driving down the highway, I suddenly heard a thump, thump, thump. The strange noise quickly grew louder, and then I realized I had a flat tire and needed to pull over. Even though I have been driving for over 45 years, I have never had a flat tire before. I immediately began to think about how the Lord truly does protect us, although we may not be aware of it until we hit a bump in the road. This was a great time to rejoice.

I quickly pulled my car into the parking lot of a nearby restaurant. As I got out to survey the damage, I checked my tires and smiled when I remembered that the brand name was Destiny. Sure enough, there it was right in front of me, one tire as flat as a pancake. My mind went back to my junior high driver’s education class I attended about a hundred years ago, and I thought, “Hmmm, now how do I change a tire?”

I decided to go inside the nearby restaurant/bar to see if I could find a Good Samaritan to help me. I walked in, announced my dilemma, and asked if anyone was willing to change my flat tire. Some of the men looked at each other, some looked down at the floor, and one gentleman finally spoke up, “Yes, I’ll change it for you.”

After the spare tire was put on, in the sweltering heat I might add, I gave the man a generous financial gift and thanked him profusely. When I got back into my car, I made mental notes of what we can learn from this experience. Knowing that tires prophetically represent a person’s spiritual condition, I believe the lessons learned here are extremely timely as God is bringing change into many of our lives.

First of all, when things start to sound differently than what we’re used to, we need to take heed of what is taking place within us or around us. A thump can be a warning sign that something has gone wrong. Let’s say, for example, that someone’s vocabulary starts to sound differently than what it has normally been—they begin cursing or swearing—and we wonder if this is the thump of being backslidden. Or maybe the thump is with us—we begin to notice that we’re murmuring or complaining a lot more than usual lately.

Though this could be indicative of just having a bad day, and really nothing to worry about, it could also a be warning sign of negativity trying to override a positive attitude within our hearts. If we heed these signs, we’ll allow a gentleman, a.k.a. Holy Spirit, to make changes in our lives, allowing us to be continually conformed into the image of Christ so we can keep on pursuing the destiny God has for us.

The thumps in life can also be cautions that cause us to slow down. I remember a wise man once told me, “Paulette, we only get a few seconds’ notice before we crash and burn.” In other words, he was telling me to slow down and pace myself, or I could suffer burnout and hit a wall. If there are seasons in life where things seem flat and deflated, it could be a sign that we’re to slow down, recognize what is going on around us, and assess the situation from God’s perspective, ultimately trusting that He is going to refill us with fresh anointing and joy from heaven as we stop and rest in His presence.

Sometimes in our lives there are things or situations that just can’t be fixed—a simple Band-Aid® won’t do. This was the case with my tire. Though the gentleman put the spare tire on my car, when I took my flat tire to get fixed, I found out that it had been punctured by a sharp branch and could not be repaired. The damage was just too great. It was time for a change. I needed a new tire to get the vehicle back on the highway to destiny.

Even though the word change scares many people, bringing up feelings of leaving their comfort zones, the truth is that change is good. You see, the Destiny tire on my car had accomplished its purpose for several years, but its assignment was now completed. The bump in the road had forced change, causing a detour while strengthening my faith and trust in the midst of it, and even creating connections with new people. The change for me came easily due to staying calm, assessing the situation, and finding a way to solve the problem; but sometimes change can be difficult if we allow ourselves to become absorbed in the problem.

I’ve talked to many Christians lately who are just plain tired and are feeling worn out. They’ve fought the good fight and desperately want to continue in their race, but the enemy is trying to deflate them. Let’s recognize the spiritual attack, friends, and remember that the enemy’s purpose in the last days is to “speak out against the Most High and wear down the saints of the Highest One” (Daniel 7:25). If your thump is that you feel worn out, the Lord would say to you today that He is about to bring change in your life; He is about to send a fresh wind from heaven, fresh air that will fill you anew and make your journey smooth once again. Take Jesus’s easy burden and light yoke upon you, trading in the heavy one you have been carrying around for far too long (Matthew 11:28-30).

Isn’t it comforting to know that even in the midst of all the change happening in our lives, although it may be unexpected by us, it hasn’t taken God by surprise. With that confidence we are prepared to stand firm so that when we encounter a bump in the road, we calmly assess the situation, seek help where we need it, and ultimately allow detours or redirection into our lives. We learn to embrace divine delays, wholeheartedly believing that the Lord will use them to bring about His purposes.

If we’re not careful resistance to God’s change can occur when we hear the thump. We might have a tendency to suddenly panic, take matters into our own hands, and try to make change happen in the flesh before clearly looking at the situation and praying. It’s so important to take a step back for a moment, look at the situation from God’s perspective, and ask Him how He wants us to respond to it. There is no need to worry, however, because He will send the Helper and keep His promise written in Galatians 6:9, “Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary.”

Change is coming, beloved. Don’t be afraid when you hear the thump; God is trying to get your attention. He is trying to get you to slow down and press into Him to find out how He wants you to respond in this next season of your life. If you’re feeling deflated, stop, get into the Lord’s presence, and you will find fullness of joy as He leads you on the path of life (Psalm 16:11). We have been faithfully serving the purposes of God, but maybe—just maybe—it is time that God wants to bring some much-needed change into our lives.