“Better is the poor that walketh in his integrity, than he that is perverse in his lips, and is a fool.”–Prov. 19:1
Integrity is one of those things that is greatly needed but rarely found, which is a terrible shame! While we don’t have any reason to expect it from the world it is the duty of every Christian. Even unbelievers seem to know that. That’s why they are so quick to call us hypocrites when we fail. Sadly we give them plenty ammunition, and it generally shows up in what we call “the little things”. Many times we see it in the way in which we relate to our brothers and sisters in Christ– where you would least expect it.
As a pastor I have a front row seat where I am forced to see it over and over again– although I would rather not. It’s obvious because it has to do with things like manners, common courtesy, respect, etc.–things expected in school, on the job, at social events, etc. The same people who rise to the expectations in those places often refuse to show the same respect in church. They come and go and do as they please without consideration for others, even those in authority. They don’t give their best while they are there, no notice when they are absent, and no explanation when leave. They wouldn’t do it at work or in the courtroom, but don’t see it as important in the church, although we are commanded to be blameless.
It’s a shame that they aren’t more concerned about their testimony. What we do, for good or bad, has a great affect on others. Your example can be more powerful than a sermon or song. Just as Daniel’s character opened doors to a life of usefulness, being a person of integrity can give you great opportunities to be used of God. May God deliver us from hypocrisy and duplicity and help us to have a Christ-like spirit in all we do! God help us to truly live up to the title of “ladies” and “gentlemen”.–HDS
Lakeway Baptist Church
5801 FM 1960 E
Humble, TX. 77346