Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Importance of Integrity

Why we should pray for our sons' integrity, our spouse's integrity, and our own integrity
In the leader’s guide for her book Warrior Prayers, Brooke McGlothlin wrote:
“Integrity can be defined as firm adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values or the quality or state of being complete or undivided. Someone who stands up for what is right no matter who is around.”
The bible is clear that loving God and loving others are the most important commandments (Matthew 22:36-40). However, integrity might be the most important trait for our sons to gain to live a healthy, fruitful life in our culture. No matter how much we try to shelter them, they will be confronted with so many chances to sin secretly. With sexting, internet pornography, social media/ease of adultery, the widespread availability of drugs and alcohol at a young age, we MUST pray for their integrity! 
I love the part of the definition that defines integrity as the “state of being complete or undivided.” When we are incomplete or divided in our faithfulness or loyalty to our children, our spouse, our God, problems arise. When a husband’s attention is divided between his wife and women on nasty internet sites (who are half our age, and surgically enhanced), spirits are crushed. When a politician divides his focus between his constituents and his mistresses, trust is lost. When an employee divides his loyalty between his corporation and his desire to make money by disclosing non-public information, jail time is imminent.  When a woman’s time is divided between reading her bible and reading gossip magazines, her mind (and therefore words and actions) is confused and her ministry is hindered.
I love my husband for his integrity. George is the same person when he stands right next to me as he is when he is in some other state. He is the same person at work that he is at church. I love that when his former coworkers invited him to Hooters, he declined and came home to me, in my elastic pants, melted off makeup, and burnt dinner. I don't ever have to worry about him having an affair, cheating on our taxes, or turning his back on me or the boys. Even when I have beaten him down with my expectations, my words, my anger, etc., he stays true to the committment he made to me 9 years ago. I didn't realize then what the most important trait in a spouse was. I was looking for a good sense of humor, good communication skills, romantic gestures, an adventurous and funloving spirit, unending compassion, etc. Some of these George has and some he does not. Integrity is now the most important characteristic. What good are romantic gestures if he also does them for other women? What good are sweet words if he turns around and says nasty ones about you to his friends? I love that my three boys can look up to George as an example of integrity! I love you, George! Your committment to our family and your dedication to do what is right does not go unnoticed.

**I have known many wives who do not have this reassurance and they live in fear about their marriage, their finances, their children's wellbeing, even their own self-esteem, etc.. If that is you, please know that I am praying for you!

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