Thursday, April 10, 2008

integrity

I like the word, integrity. For me it's being who I am everywhere. Dropping the pretence. Not wanting to impress others, and working against that. Yet having tact and manners; in other words this doesn't mean just doing what I feel like doing, or want to do. It really means for us in Jesus, seeking to be a follower of Jesus and to walk in the Spirit, wherever we are and in whatever we're doing.

Integrity here is not merely "steadfast adherence to a strict moral or ethical code." It is the desire to live in this life according to God's will and in dependence on God. This involves interdependence on others in Jesus. It is a life we must live, but a life we cannot do on our own. We need both God in Jesus, and those in Jesus- to receive from others and give back to them.

Integrity openly acknowledges the reality that we don't always walk in integrity in this life. Integrity in this way is to always seek to walk before God in Jesus, no matter what we face, or have done or failed to do. It is a life in which we ever need the Lord both to know how to live, to have that will to do so, and then to do it.

Let's look to Jesus, and to those who followed him, in Scripture. While we know we don't measure up, let's look at this as our goal. To be growing and moving towards the one perfect humanity, together, found in Jesus. As we look forward to the day when we will all walk in perfected, confirmed integrity forever, in the grace, truth and love of our God.

What thought might you like to share on this?

10 comments:

preacherman said...

Brother,
I believe that integity is everything. It is who we really are and what we do. It is so important that have integriity especially as minister, pastors, and other church leaders. It is important that we should our integrity to our wife and childre. Our integrity will stay with us until we die. Who was Ted? Was he a man of integrity? Did he live right and holy. Was he a man of God. Did he show people the love of Jesus through his live. Integrity asks us the question I believe is what legacy will you leave whn you die.
Wonderful post as always.

NaNcY said...

for me it's Jesus.

Rachel Mc said...

I agree that integrity is everything and it is the mark you leave about your life. More than anything, I want God to be proud of me and my sons. What I don't get, is how some people could throw their integrity away - just like that. I don't get it.
"being who I am everywhere" very good statement. I am learning to bring my relationship with Jesus into my "everyday" life. Its kinda hard to do when you work in a secular place and have secular friends...but slowly I am working on it. I want to have integrity.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Yes, Preacherman. We must live it out. Leaders must be good examples of what all Christians are to be. Amen, brother, and thanks.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Nancy,
Amen. Excellent thought. And in Jesus we can have integrity, the kind that God wants, in loving God and in loving our neighbor as ourselves.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Rachel,
Very good. Great to see your desire at the workplace.

People get caught up into something that really is going against them, but hard for them to get out of. People are weak, we all are. So we need Jesus, of course, to really walk in this integrity. It can be a struggle because for me I see integrity as reaching into all of life, into every corner of my heart and thoughts. And seeing all of that in the light of God's revelation to us in Jesus and in Scripture.

Thanks for sharing that.

lorenzothellama said...

Dear Ted,
I think integrity means the absolute truths and living according to how one believes these absolute truths.

Maalie is a man of great integrity, yet you know his feelings on religion!

I feel if someone has integrity they can go into any situation, however sordid, and come out smelling of roses! It's sort of acting on instinct to do the best, and somehow knowing what to do.
Not putting it very well, but you probably know what I'm trying to say.

I think integrity is a great gift and I wish I had more of it. I know I don't always act totally out without self-interest.

Thanks for your comments on my blog. It is always a pleasure to have a comment from you. I'm not getting on the computer much at the moment with my family staying. When they go we are off to Peru for three weeks.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Lorenzo,
Thanks for your kind words. I really enjoy your blog. Alot of fun and good pics.

Yes, integrity involves being true to what one believes. And I have no doubt that Maalie fits into that. I enjoy his blog, too, and appreciate much of what he says and how he says it.

Integrity also involves a realism in which again, Maalie and I would be on two different sides. Realism embraces all of life and revelation from God, in Christ. So that for me to be a person of integrity, I must embrace all of that. And I believe God calls all people everywhere to do the same.

I don't think God requires us to not enjoy life and others. Yet as you say, self-interest can get in the way of integrity, and that is so true. I'm reminded of Paul's words in Scripure: "he who loves his wife, loves himself."

I agree, it's a gift, and we can only head towards the perfection of that gift in Jesus, I believe.

Going to Peru! Wow. Enjoy, be safe and blessed in your trip.

Thanks.

bryan riley said...

"Integrity openly acknowledges the reality that we don't always walk in integrity in this life."

Classic! Good post and this is a trait of God's character that we should all spend more time asking God to reveal to us and grow in our hearts.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Amen, Bryan. Thanks for your helpful words, and for your kind remark.