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Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Living a Life of Integrity

Recently, a friend contacted me because he wanted to catch up. Life can get busy for all of us, and I appreciated this person reaching out to me. I replied with my availability. And then, I heard nothing. Zilch. Did he mean what he said, I thought. This caused me to take a long look at my life and see the ways in which I fall short of my word. How can I grow to be better? Do I live a life of integrity?

God brought along a verse into my path. 1 Chronicles 29:17 NIV reads,

“I know, my God, that you test the heart and are pleased with integrity. All these things I have given willingly and with honest intent. And now I have seen with joy how willingly your people who are here have given to you.”

If integrity pleases God, then it must be something He wants for our lives. I started in on research in this area.

What is integrity?

I was interested to see what our modern-day culture has to say about the topic, so I turned to my ever-present assistant, Google. In an article on the true meaning of integrity listed in the Huffington Post, integrity is defined as the “concept of consistency of actions, values, methods, measures, principles, expectations, and outcomes. In ethics, integrity is regarded as the honesty and truthfulness or accuracy of one’s actions.”1

I happen to agree with Huffington and like this definition, especially as it points to accuracy of one’s actions vs. one’s words. But, what does God say about integrity?

  • The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity (Proverbs 11:3 NIV).
  • Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much (Luke 16:10 NIV).
  • For we are taking pains to do what is right, not only in the eyes of the Lord but also in the eyes of man (2 Corinthians 8:21 NIV).

If we are destroyed by our “duplicity” or deceitfulness, then living a life of consistency and honesty will protect us. If we can be trusted with a little, God will bless us with the opportunities for increased blessings. If we strive to keep our word and do what is right, then people will see us working for God and not man; they will see the light of Christ in our lives.

So, what are practical applications?

We are called to follow through on our word. If we say we’re going to make it to an event, then living a life of integrity says that we go. If we agree to help out a friend, a life of integrity says that we give up our personal comforts to fulfill that promise. If we choose a life of integrity, then we speak up when what we see something wrong, whether in our culture or in our workplaces.

Near the end of his earthly life, Jesus says,

“Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” (Luke 22:42 NIV)

Jesus lives out the ultimate example of integrity. He stays committed to His Father and God’s promise to all mankind despite the personal distress he endures.

This is not easy. God doesn’t call us to easy; He calls us to be Christ-like. Emulating the humility, love, and selflessness of Jesus is anything but easy. However, it’s important. When we demonstrate integrity to the people in our lives, we shine the light of Christ and cement a solid life foundation.

Copyright © 2/1/2020 K.A. Wypych, used with permission.

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