Most of us are consistent in our actions. Our actions are a reflection of what we believe and what we value. After reading many definitions of integrity, this is what I have pulled together.
Integrity – Clinging to your morals and convictions, valuing honesty and truth, consistently, day after day.
I read a verse in Proverbs the other day that hit me hard regarding integrity.
For only the godly will live in the land, and those with integrity will remain in it. (Proverbs 2:21)
I believe that the land talked about here for our Christian lives, is our destiny. Godly people can and will walk in what the Lord has laid out for them. But there is a difference between walking through a beautiful meadow and remaining in it. The one enjoys it briefly, like a holiday, and they soon go back to the old life, dreaming of one day returning.
Those who live in a meadow become one with the area. The sights and smells become comforting and familiar. Birds sing, flowers grow and waters rush. You know the trickle of the stream, and the varieties of butterflies that surround you. You breathe in deeply and the air that fills your lungs is refreshing, and you breathe out and know that you are home. You feel safe and secure, this is where you belong.
Is your hearts cry to remain in God’s will? Mine is. So how do we do it?
Sin is of course the number one thing that can remove us from the centre of that beautiful place which is God’s will. You can be ensnared by something, not realizing that your choices will cost you your life. The battle for your thoughts can be lost in an instant, and one bad choice can ruin you.
That is no ones desire. So how do we remain?
Let’s look back to that verse. Those with integrity with remain in the land.
After reading that, something jumped within me, screaming “seek out integrity, find it, develop it, live with it, love it!”
Pastor Rick Warren of Saddleback Church says;
Integrity is built by defeating the temptation to be dishonest.
Being honest is more than just simply telling the truth. It’s being the same person, the person you say you are, in private and in public. It’s saying that you will do something, and then actually doing it, even if no one is holding you accountable. It’s saying that you won’t do something, and then actually not doing it, even if no one is watching.
It takes courage to examine your ways and ask the Lord if they are rooted in integrity or not.
Well known bible teacher and pastor, Chuck Swindoll made this powerful statement.
“Few things are more infectious than a godly lifestyle. The people you rub shoulders with everyday need that kind of challenge. Not prudish. Not preachy. Just cracker jack clean living. Just honest to goodness, bone – deep, non-hypocritical integrity.”
This is tough, and the Lord gives us what we need to walk out our Christian lives, so we can daily come to him and ask for forgiveness and renew our commitment to integral living.
I don’t care what it takes, I want to remain in the land that the Lord has for me. If integrity is the way, then we as children of God need to pursue it wholeheartedly. The saddest thing to imagine is a life not lived to its full potential.
What does integrity mean to you?