Integrity as Character

When I think about integrity I think of someone who always does the right thing, no matter the push back or what people may say; they stay true to themselves, the truth, or a cause. Some people admire that about a person, others become envious and try to bring them down. It’s a character trait that seems lost in society. We have tons of opportunities to secretly bring others down or cheat, but those secret moments matter.

What we do in secret builds our character. Even if others cannot see it, the fruit of those moments spill over in front of others; sooner or later others will catch up and things will come to the light. 

Circumstances come, conflict arise, but our character, our integrity, takes part in how it is handled.

It hurts when someone gossips about you, it hurts when a friend betrays you, and it hurts to be left out, the pain is real and of course others should not do that to you, but something they can’t take is your integrity. We can either fight fire with fire or take it to God -- who sees all -- and be unshakeable with integrity and grace.

The reward for having integrity is this: God supports us. Psalm 41:12 says “But you have upheld me because of my integrity, and set me in your presence forever.”

God knows us, he sees all of us, he knows if we have integrity and when he sees that, he blesses it. He sets us where we need to be, the best place to be; with him, in his presence forever.

We don’t have to be perfect, without flaws or sin (only Jesus is without sin), the Psalm does not say that. When we’re faced with conflict, obstacles, or hard times, we can go to God for guidance, strength, and strategy, and by keeping our integrity he blesses us.

How can we have and keep our integrity? Ask God for the grace to do so. In Psalm 41:4 David says: “Oh Lord, be gracious; heal me for I have sinned against you!” Yet, in the same Psalms he says: “But you, O Lord, be gracious to me, and raise me up, that I may repay them! By this I know that you delight in me: my enemy will not shout in triumph over me.” In this Psalm David wants to fight back, he wants to show his enemies a thing or too, but even before he can even attempt that, his enemy will not shout in triumph over him. He’s kept his integrity, he has remained innocent, and in that God delights in him. We are not perfect, but God still delights in us.

I think of the saying “nice guys finish last.” That’s the fear of many, so we do what we can to “get ahead” or “get back” at someone. But look what the Bible says: “God always blesses those who are kind to the poor and helpless. They’re the first ones God helps when they find themselves in any trouble. The Lord will preserve and protect them. They’ll be honored and esteemed while their enemies are defeated.” Psalm 41:1-2.

Your good deeds and how you treat others are never overlooked by God. You will be preserved and protected by the one who creates mountains, holds the ocean, directs the wind, and places the stars in the sky.


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