Integrity: What You Are When You’re Alone with God
“God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God.” (Matthew 5:8 NLT, second edition)
The Bible says in Matthew 5:8, “God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God” (NLT, second edition).
To “see God” means to experience the presence of God. Believers who have a pure heart get to feel the power of God. They get to know the purpose of God for their lives. They get to live in the peace of God. They experience the pardon of God.
Do you want to be one of those people? We don’t talk a lot these days about being pure in heart, but we do use the word “integrity.” To have integrity does not mean you are perfect, because if it did, none of us would have it!
So what does it mean to have integrity?
Integrity is wholeness.
A lot of people think of their life like a pie, and the different parts of their life are the pieces of the pie. This slice of the pie is my career. This is my work life. This is my spiritual life. Then this is my family life. That one is my social life. Then over here is my secret life — my compulsions, addictions, and the things nobody else knows about.
If you segment your life like that, you lack integrity, because your life is not a whole. Integrity means you’re the same person with everybody, in your speech, actions, and motives, no matter which part of life you’re dealing with.
Integrity is authenticity.
During plays in ancient Greek culture, there was one guy who would play multiple roles. He would come onstage wearing a mask and then go backstage to put on a different mask to play another role. This person was called the “hupokrites,” and it’s where we get the word “hypocrite.”
When you wear masks so that you appear one way in front of some people and another way for others, it shows a lack of authenticity. God wants you to be exactly who he made you to be, no matter who is watching.
Integrity is unmixed motivation.
It means you do the right thing, and you do it for the right reason. You have unmixed motivation and pure motives. You’re sincere and straightforward in every area of your life and with all people. You pray to talk to God and not to impress other people.
We’re interested in image, but God is interested in integrity. We’re interested in reputation, but God is interested in character. Reputation is what everybody thinks you are. Integrity is what you really are. Reputation is what you are in public. Integrity is what you are when you’re all alone with God.
God blesses those who have integrity. They get to be the friends of God.
“The LORD detests people with crooked hearts, but he delights in those with integrity” (Proverbs 11:20).
Talk It Over
- Would the people in each area of your life — your coworkers, classmates, family members, and friends — all use the same words to describe you? Why or why not?
- What keeps you from showing vulnerability in your relationships?
- Do people feel like they can let down their guard with you? How do you show others that you accept them just as they are?
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