Living with Integrity
Integrity is defined as, “the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles.” This is what integrity looks like, “what you do when no one is listening.” This was stated by a sixth grader this past Tuesday when I asked, “What does the word integrity mean?” I had to break school covid protocol and give the kid a fist bump because he was spot on with my notes.
What do you do when no one is looking? When there is no one to impress, or to sway their opinion, or look better in their eyes. When your actions or inactions are truly the result of who you are. What do you do? Those private moments are the reflection of our relationship with Christ. Do we struggle to maintain our integrity when there is no one to hold us accountable or are we walking out our faith because of our love for God?
We know what integrity is, the scripture tells us in Romans 1:20, “For His invisible attributes, namely, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.” God is the author of integrity and morality, we know how we are to act even the one who is an unbeliever...they are without excuse. If you read on in Romans 2:1-4 the conviction of integrity should become even stronger, “Therefore you nave no excuse, O man, every one of you who judges. For in passing judgment on another you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, practice the very same things. We know that the judgment of God rightly falls on those who practice such things. Do you suppose, O man—you who judge those who practice such things and yet do them yourself—that you will escape the judgment of God? Or do you presume on the riches of His kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance? But because of your hard and impenitent heart you are storing up wrath for yourself on the day of wrath when God’s righteous judgment will be revealed.” WOW...that’s some pretty heavy stuff.
Our integrity is within and is guided by either flesh or Spirit. Many times our integrity is challenged in our heart when we are not alone. Our thoughts have the tendency to run rampant and without ever committing an action we will compromise our integrity. 2 Corinthians 10:4-5 teaches us to take captive every thought and make it pleasing to God because the battles we face are not fought with in the flesh but with the divine power to demolish strongholds. I feel it is accurate to say about the believer, when you wrestle against integrity issues you are in need of that divine power.
So, in your integrity, hold firm to the divine power that has been given to you by God. That divine power that raised Christ from the dead has the power to break any strong hold Satan, the world or the flesh has on you. Make that step to taking captive any thoughts that go against the integrity of God.
In Christ, Randall