Equipping the saints for the work of the ministry - Ephesians 4:12

Christian Integrity and Righteousness

This morning I kept hearing the word integrity. It seems it’s important enough to the Lord to ask us to reflect on its meaning and understand how it is to be applied to our lives as children of God. According to Merriam-Webster, the definition of integrity is the, “quality of being honest and fair” and the “state of being complete or whole.”

The world has drifted into a realm of compromise. Loose morals and a lack of ethics abound. These actions are no stranger to our Heavenly Father. Our salvation doesn’t give us reason to join the party because everyone else is letting loose. No, we walk with upright character and righteousness.

We don’t lie, or tell half-truths, for that does not uphold the righteousness of God. We are already made righteous in His sight, therefore we must uphold this honor because others are watching, and most of all, God is watching. Why would we desire to grieve the Holy Spirit to satisfy our own desires of the flesh? We are a new creation in Christ Jesus.

No longer do we walk according to the deities of the flesh. No! We are now Spirit born. His truth lies within us and we must expound it upon others. We are His living example.

Would you look unto a mirror and forget what you look like? Surely not! People with integrity desire to get the story straight. They are honest, peace loving, and fun. They are sincere and truthful and want to walk with good morals and virtue. They possess the joy of the Lord. Their wisdom doesn’t come from man, but from God.

Sometimes God will speak to us through man, for there is wisdom in the multitude of counsel. We must be able to discern between a man pleasing spirit and a God pleasing spirit. The fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22-24 reflects a person of integrity whose “yes” means “yes” and “no” means “no.” A person who sounds off a hearty “Amen!” when in agreement with the Word of God. Their lives reflect their words.

In genesis 3, Adam and Eve tried to hide their sin, as did Cain when he killed Able in Genesis 4. Achan tried to hide the goods he stole in his tent in Joshua 7. All of these and more tell of a momentary lapse of reason where the action, birthed from a thought, seemed right at the time, but was wrong in the eyes of God. Their integrity was compromised because they walked away from the mirror forgetting what they looked like. They exchanged truth for a lie.

Praise God for His redemptive power! Because of the work Christ did at the cross we are allowed another chance to reconcile with Him. We are made righteous in His eyes as He looks upon us seeing us as we should be, and not as we are. Therefore we should cast off all that hinders us and walk in the integrity and righteousness that forgives their brother for their offense.

Our love for Him compels us to have faith in the truth and speak it. No hiding and no shame. Forgive yourself most of all, because we cannot experience His love until we learn to forgive. You see, when you look into the mirror you begin to see the reflection of Christ (Colossians 1:27). Christ in me the hope of glory! Hallelujah!

Let His Name be glorified in all the earth. Bring honor to the King of kings and Lord of lords for He is worthy to be praised. I choose to walk in the honor and integrity of the Lord. I choose to let His joy be my strength. For others will see and call me blessed because of whom I serve.

May our lives be a testimony that allows others to rise out of the ashes of their unbelief and receive the beauty of the King. May their joy be full and they learn to walk in integrity, one step at a time.

Isaiah 26:8 – “Yes, Lord, walking in the way of your laws, we wait for you. Your name and renown are the desire of our hearts.”

1 Corinthians 7:35 – “I am saying this for your own good, not to restrict you, but that you may live in a right way in undivided devotion to the Lord.”

Philippians 1:27 – “Above all else, you must live in a way that brings honor to the good news about Christ. Then, whether I visit you or not, I will hear that all of you think alike. I will know that you are working together and that you are struggling side by side to get others to believe the good news.”

Psalm 119:11 – “I treasure your word above all else. It keeps me from sinning against you.”

Galatians 5:22-24 – “God’s Spirit makes us loving, happy, peaceful, patient, kind, good, faithful, gentle, and self-controlled. There is no law against behaving in any of these ways. And because we belong to Christ Jesus, we have killed our selfish feelings and desires.”

In 2004, Lea Bates answered the call to begin a women's prison ministry and in 2007 helped pioneer a drug and alcohol regeneration center for women. She is an ordained minister living in Georgia. Lea's first book, “Before I Knew You," is available in paperback through Lulu.com.