I think it’s easy to expect the best from everyone else, isn’t it?! We demand that the car/truck dealership sell us vehicles that are backed by 100% guarantee. We insist that we are treated with timely service and hot food when we pay for a meal at a restaurant. We become frustrated and uptight when we have to wait for something or are treated differently than what we expected. It’s so easy to demand that WE are important and worthy of good treatment however; it’s always good to be mindful of the Golden Rule: “Do to others as you would have them do to you.”
I think of that verse found in Matthew 7: 4 & 5 “…how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ and behold, the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.” This is such a good visual aid to help us really own up to how we conduct our lives and how we should live day to day, when no one is looking.
Do you know anyone who says they’ll be at a function or event by a certain time or offers to bring something but rarely, if ever follows through with their word? Maybe there are certain aspects of life in which we mean well but have trouble following through with our word. The Word of God warns us to avoid making friends with such people who cannot keep their word. They are fools and will influence us to take the easy road, when all the while; we will experience all kinds of troubles and unhappiness.
Many times I’ve offered to cook or bake something to take to an event. It seemed easy to offer at the time and yet, when it boils down to actually following through with the commitment, sometimes it can cost a lot. It could cost me money, time, energy and more however, that person or organization is counting on me to follow through with my offer. Just as we desire that businesses and people carry through with what they promised us, we must reciprocate that action back towards them.
What does the dictionary say about having integrity? According to Webster’s, integrity means: the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness. It means honesty, honor, good character, morals, fairness, sincerity, truthfulness and trustworthiness. In this day and age, to have a reputation of being a person of integrity is a high accolade. It’s not an easy road to take but it’s the most rewarding. One of the wisest men to live penned this: “Integrity will lead you to success and happiness.” This quote from Solomon could change the very direction of our destiny if we would take it seriously.
I took a poll on social media to see what my friends had to say about integrity. This is what “integrity” means to them: keeping our word, showing up on time, doing the right thing all the time – not matter who sees or doesn’t see, staying up late to finish a job (such as I am tonight), holding our tongue, say what we mean and mean what we say, keep commitments and promises, and as one of my friends says “Being impeccable with your words.” Another great friend put it this way: “Always taking the higher road in honesty, love and respect …even if it costs you everything.” Wow. Now that statement puts things into perspective! Solomon goes on to say that “integrity will keep a good man from falling.” Today, let’s take stock of how we conduct our lives each day. Do we follow through with our commitment? Do we show up on time? Do we work at our jobs as though we owned the company? Are we willing to pay the price to keep our word? This week, I challenge you (and me) to be men and women of integrity. Let’s be people of our word, be honest, trustworthy and upright.
Scripture references: Proverbs 11:3, 6