Summary: Learning to integrate your life values with daily living.
Becoming a Person of Integrity
Character Builder Series
Pastor Mike Biolsi
$20 bill illustration: ask, “Who would like this $20 bill?” Then crumple it up, step on it, roll it around and then hold it up again and ask, “Who still wants this $20 bill?”
The value remains no matter what the item looks like n the outside – no matter how scarred, bruised or beaten, the value is still the same. That is integrity. Becoming a person of integrity means:
"Deciding to integrate my heart’s value into my daily actions" ~ John Maxwell
As we seek to clothe ourselves with the characteristics of Jesus, I think we must look long and hard at this particular one. Jesus, when defending himself against the religious leaders of his day (his enemies and rivals), said this about his claim of being the Messiah:
John 10:25 - Jesus answered, “I did tell you, but you do not believe. The miracles I do in my Father’s name speak for me”
HE says, what I say and what I do testify as to who I am.
A person of integrity is validated by their words and their deeds. If we are pure in heart we can be pure in action. Integrity is making my daily actions line up with my heart’s values.
I must value the benefits of integrity
Let’s be realistic – none of us will change unless we understand the value of change. Few of us will pay the price for an item in the store unless we are in agreement that the item is worth the price.
Imagine going into the store to buy a pair of shoes for $150! (Now, I hope I didn’t step on any toes here!). To me a pair of shoes is not worth any more than $50, and I will usually shop until I can find something for around $30. Why? Because I have in my mind that a pair of shoes only has so much value. If you try to get me to buy into anything else I will not do it because I do not see the value.
NOW, let’s look a computers. They almost all look the same on the outside, but some cost a whole lot more than others. What is the difference? The difference is what is on the inside. I used to sell computers, I know. It is the power and the guts of the computer that dictate the price.
Integrity is not a fad like a pair of shoes. It is a lot like a computer – what is on the inside is what counts.
If I am going to be a person of integrity than I must understand the value to determine if it is worth the price I must pay.
Integrity provides me with Protection (less fear)
Psalm 25:21 - May integrity and uprightness protect me, because my hope is in you.
Mark Twain said: “Speaking honestly is better. It takes a lot of stress out of our lives. If you tell the truth you don’t have to remember anything, but if you don’t tell the truth you have to remember what you said.”
When I have integrity I have protection. I have less fear and less stress because I do not have to look over my shoulder all of the time.
Integrity provides me with Security (greater confidence)
Proverbs 10:9 - The man of integrity walks securely, but he who takes crooked paths will be found out.
I can be confident that what I do is right and that it will prosper (though it may not prosper financially at times, it can prosper in other ways!) If you walk with integrity you do not have to worry about having a shaky foundation for what you do, it provides a firm foundation.
Integrity provides me with Guidance (better decision)
Proverbs 11:3 - The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity.
In a society without moral absolutes anything goes. When people can choose what is right and wrong without having a standard, how do you decide which way to go? Eventually you will get caught in your duplicity. It will come back to bite you. If you live in integrity then your decisions are easier to make – your integrity guides you.
Integrity provides me with Hope (future rewards)
Job 4:6 - “Is not your fear of God your confidence, and the integrity of your ways your hope?
Hope for what? Hope that some day when I stand before God I will not be ashamed of how I lived and what He will say to me. Hope that I will be commended and not rebuked for my lifestyle and the testimony that I had while alive.
I must elevate myself to model integrity