"Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me" (Psalm 51:10).

How could I say no? My children were asking for a day off from homeschooling to enjoy our favorite family activity — riding our bikes. Since we had just moved to the country, we weren't aware of the problems that lay ahead. As we proceeded down the gravel road for our first outing, we traveled only a short way before three of our bikes started losing air in their tires. Stopping the other children, my husband examined the flat tires and found goatheads sticking into the tread. Apparently, the burrs that were ruining our day came from the puncture vine that grew easily in the ditches and roads near our new home.

Looking for a fast and inexpensive solution to the problem, we decided to purchase several tubes of "goo." However, we quickly discovered this sticky remedy was useless against the goathead's long, spiny ends. My husband's next idea involved purchasing an extra tire tube and cutting it in half to reinforce each bike tire with additional thickness. This idea also proved to be useless. After exhausting several other options, we finally bought what we should have purchased in the first place — expensive, solid tubes necessary for riding bikes on thorn-infested roads. After calculating the time, effort, and money spent, we realized how much our "quick fix" had cost.

Quick fixes usually have a way of costing more in spiritual matters, too. Like King David's sin with Bathsheba, we foolishly attempt to fix or cover up the sin in our lives with short-term solutions. Bypassing prayer and the correction from God's Word, we waste time and energy thinking, "What's the easiest way to get out of this?" We refuse to listen to God's disciplining voice and trade confession and long-term Holy Spirit transformation for our man-made remedy.

What about you? Are you heading down life's road thinking you have everything under control? If you've been tempted to apply a quick fix to your sinful condition, you may find yourself with a flat tire or, worse yet, headed for the ditch. Pull over now and allow the solid truth of God's Word to bring about the change in your life that God desires! "For I will declare mine iniquity; I will be sorry for my sin" (Psalm 38:18).

Lord, I've been trying to fix this mess in my life for too long. I confess that what I've been doing is wrong. Please, transform me into the person You want me to be. In the name of Jesus, Amen.