Aug 14, 2008

Integrity

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What is integrity? Have you ever thought about it? Stop for a moment and define integrity.

I am about to begin an eight week study on integrity and I am very excited about it. This week as I am preparing the overview of the lesson I realized that I had never stopped to really think about what integrity is. I can name some acts of integrity, but it is so eye opening to define a word, so I went to dictionary.com and looked up the definition and synonyms for integrity. Read these slowly and thoughtfully. Consider how these apply to what it looks like to follow Christ.


Definition:
1. adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty.

2. the state of being whole, entire, or undiminished: as in to preserve the integrity of the empire.

3. a sound, unimpaired, or perfect condition: as in the integrity of a ship's hull.

Synonyms:
character, completeness, decency, entireness, honesty, honor, sincerity, soundness, virtue, wholeness, fiber, entirety, oneness, totality, honorableness, incorruptibility, upstandingness, durability, firmness, solidity, stability, strength


Wow! Did you get that? Integrity is the very fiber that should define the character of every follower of Christ. It is that point where we are whole, one with Christ and with His Church. When we are walking in integrity, we are glorifiying God. We are doing so at that very moment, not we are working toward it but we are in the midst of it right then! A person of integrity stands out. Yes different, but it is a difference that shows Jesus to the world, that makes His light shine brightly from within us. It is choosing to do what is right even if we can get away with what is not. It is choosing what is best over what is good. It is Hard!

Jesus walked in integrity even as He lived as a man here on earth. He was tempted in the same ways we are, tempted to satisy the flesh over submission to the Spirit. On our own we are unable to fully walk in integrity. Oh we can achieve it sometimes, maybe even often, but there are still areas where we will struggle and yes, fail.

What counts is whether we have been transformed into a new creation. (Galatians 6:15)

He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. (Philippians 1:6)


Walking in integrity is a process of change that is a work of the Holy Spirit. Still we must remember that the Holy Spirit does not force change in us. We must cooperate, we must submit to His authority over our lives. That is over all areas of our lives. Are you a woman or a man of integrity? Do you want to be? Are there areas within you that you have not allowed Jesus to change?


I would like to encourage you to go back to the day, the moment that you gave your life to Christ. Close your eyes and experience it again. Remember the love you had for Christ at that moment. Remember the desire you had for Him, to please Him, to live for Him, to give yourself completely to Him. Do it again right now. Fall in Love with Jesus.... now give Him those areas ... completely. Ask Him to make you a person of integrity.

O Lord you are all I need. I love you my God and my King. Only you can change me and make me complete. I give myself totally to you. Make me one with you. Make me a woman of integrity. ~ In Christ



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11 comments:

Joyfulsister said...

Hi my Sistah!!
You know you made me laugh with your comment on my blog lol. If you go back you can see my answer.

Wow I love this post and all the meanings of Integrity.This is such a great reminder to those who still feel like they are not worthy in God's eyes to walk with their head held high, no longer hanging their head in shame, guilt, and whatever keeps them in bondage. When we become a child of God looks at the heart not the past mistakes. We can walk in integrity in wholeness, in strength in oneness with him praise the Lord!!
Thanks Edie I have friends wh need to come here and read this..

Hugz Lorie

Nancie said...

Thanks, Edie, for sharing this very encouraging post. What a precious reminder that integrity is the very fiber that should define the character of every follower of Christ! May God help us to walk in His ways and glorify Him through our life. Thank God that He Who has begun a good work in us will carry it to completion! Thanks for sharing this with us. It is always encouraging to read your post. Take care and God bless!

2nd Cup of Coffee said...

This week I explained integrity to a boy in the 6th grade and how important it is in leadership (he's got a lot of leadership potential). I was telling him that leaders are not necessarily the loudest voice in the room or the one everyone's looking at, it's the one who's doing what is right because it is right. People totally admire that, even in the secular world. Great thoughts, Edit. And I'm still flashing.

Tracy said...

Hi Edie!
Great thoughts on integrity! You're so right, it requires definite submission on our part. I so want my actions want to be those that demonstrate integrity and point others to Christ...may it be so, Lord...

Blessings,
Tracy

Cristine said...

Great post, Edie. I find myself always reminding my 6 year old son that we do the right thing because it is the right thing to do, period... and even if no one is looking... God is always looking and I believe we make Him smile when we do what is right, especially when there is a cost to do so.

Thank you for your kind words regarding the loss of our granddaughter. Whew! This parenting thing never gets any easier... one day you're wiping away the tears from a skinned knee and the next thing you know, the years have past and your helplesslessly standing by and wiping away tears from a pain that bandaids just won't help. But God is good and He gives us the strength to grieve and lift up all at the same time.

On a different note, I'm interested in a graphic for a friend's wall. Can you contact me for more info? journeyingforward@yahoo.com

In Christ's love,
Cristine

Shabby Olde Potting Shed said...

Integrity. A word that often loses importance to many in the world we live in yes?
I just have a second to comment, but when I get home tonight I'll come back and read more, plus need to answer your email!
Integrity is the very fiber that should define the character of every follower of Christ. WOW... Well SAID! I will be thinkin about that today! Love it!
I'll write you back SOON!
L

Kathryn said...

Beautiful post, Edie!

"I know, my God, that you test the heart and are pleased with integrity." (1 Chronicles 29:17)

Angela said...

Edie,
You are so awesome! Thanks so much for your advice. I am trying to push through this hard week I've been having, and I think the whole guy thing is just me reverting to what I find comforting when I am feeling down..a drink and a man! But don't worry, I am leaning on God instead. I asked him to develop strong trust in me, and I can only guess this is why I am being allowed to be going through this. It brought out the sinful crutches that I wasn't aware were still in the back of my closet!! I ask God to reveal anything unpleasing to him, and boy has he! It is definitely a learning experience. Thanks for your caring heart.
Angela

Renee said...

It is so true that the Holy Spirit does not force change in us! We have to be willing to place ourselves in the Potters Hands. To be modeled into the image of christ. This sounds like a great study!
Beautiful...We all need to be reminded of the moment Christ filled us with his spirit. To fall in love with Jesus every day!
Blessings to you!

Pinkshoelady said...

Hi Edie,
I loved, loved, loved this post!

We never really know what others see in our lives. We have been trying to teach our daughter not to promise things. When I say, "We will do such and such tomorrow." She will ask, "Promise?" I will smile and say, "No. Because a promise you keep no matter what, so I won't promise. But I will try very hard to keep my 'said'." We have also tried to teach her that we can deceive others and lie with our actions as well as our mouths.

Thanks for this reminder.

Thanks too for the encouraging comments you have left for me. Please e-mail me at
mpymin2@juno.com
I tried to send you the whole "Looking Through The Knot-hole" story but it came back. So if you will e-mail me I will send it via the reply!

Thanks so much my friend.

I am praying for you!
Pamela R.

The Patterson 5 said...

Thank you for this wisdom! I look forward to reading about how your study goes. I plan to have my oldest son, who is eight read this with me tomorrow so we can talk about it together. My husband and I are struggling a bit with helping him to see how important it is to be honest, accountable and responsible. This will be such a positive way to show him why we are concerned about his actions. I think this post will be helpful to a really sweet eight year old boy who needs to know why it is important to be a man of integrity. Thank you!