Thursday, March 11, 2010

Word of the Day!

There are few words in the English language that mean more to me than the word integrity. Okay, I still have to check the dictionary to remember if it's g-r-e or g-r-i, but that's a spelling weakness and not a character weakness. One of the reasons I love the word/concept so much is because of a favorite saying about it that I've known for so many years I can't remember where it came from. Isn't that the definition of originality? No, integrity forbids me from taking credit for it, but it has sure stuck in my heart through the years. "Integrity is the gift you give yourself." God has given the greatest gift of all time. Even many non-Christians know what John 3:16 says. But even God's wonderful gift of His Son, with all the love and grace it provides, remains conceptual if we don't honestly internalize it and allow it to motivate as seekers of Him. Integrity is internal honesty that drives us to consistently seek to please Him whether anyone sees it or not. It's Being Real about having a relationship with Jesus. It's when knowing that God is pleased becomes enough of a reason to do what's right. That kind of integrity is where the peace that passes worldly comprehension comes from.
Let me crank it up a notch with this observation. Your integrity is only as strong as your sense of self worth. People who don't feel good about themselves, don't do good things to themselves. That is the true irony of Christ-like unselfishness. Many think it's the result of being crushed, weak, and spineless, but it really comes from a God-given sense of self worth that makes it okay to give, be thoughtful, serve, and even sacrifice for others. Poor self worth comes from and causes self-centeredness. A self-centered person isn't interested in integrity unless displaying it furthers their personal interests.
God wants us to feel good about ourselves, unless we have something feel guilty about. When we accept His forgiveness and understand His grace, and what that says about how important we are to Him, we have joy, peace, and are motivated to share it. What's the bottom line? Our self esteem - real self esteem that lasts - can only come from God. As unworthy sinners made into worthy children of God, we are overwhelmed by love and honestly draw closer to Him. He loves us, we love our self, and are able to honestly love others. That's spiritual integrity. That's God's plan - remember? Love God and love others AS you love YOURSELF. (As quoted by Moses, Jesus, Paul, Peter, James, & John)

1 comment:

Glenave Curtis said...

How'd you get so smart, son-in-law?? Your comments brought tears of joy to my heart and eyes. I love you, dear one.