I’m taking a second go at integrity because it is such a major theme in Proverbs. And, because we are called to be people of integrity in all of life’s transactions and relationships.
Let’s look at three further life situations that challenge and encourage us to be people of integrity.
# Proverbs 20:14 is a proverb from the marketplace. It is both comical and serious at the same time.
It’s no good, it’s no good says the buyer, then off he goes and boasts about his purchase.
This proverb highlights the way we deal with other people in order to gain an advantage. Marking something down to benefit ourselves, but not the other person. (A fair product deserves a fair price). It’s about being ‘two-faced’, which is not being true to ourselves. We see in this proverb the duplicity of sinful human nature and the lack of integrity.
# God wants us to be people of integrity in our motives and intentions.
All a man’s ways seem innocent to him, but motives are weighed by the Lord. – Proverbs 16:2.
What we do may look Ok., but a person of integrity will check their motives for taking a particular a particular action, because God does! It’s not just the outward action but the inner motive and intention of our heart. As the Lord said to Samuel before he anointed David to be king. The Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart. – 1 Samuel 16:7
# Integrity (or lack of it) is obvious to a discerning person.
He who winks with his eye is plotting perversity, he who purses his lips is bent on evil. – Proverbs 16:30
A person who lacks integrity inevitably gives themselves away. Even their body language indicates the truth (or lack of it) about them. We can ‘read’ them and ‘see through them’.
This generation in which we live cries out to see women and men of integrity.
PRAYER: Our Father, empower us to display integrity in all that we do. May we shine as lights in a dark world. Cause people around us to ask ‘why are you different?.
SONG: Shine Jesus Shine by Graham Kendrick (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wAFcwns4uHc)