It’s been said that integrity isn’t what you do in front of people, it’s what you do when you’re alone and only the Lord can see. Integrity is an issue of your thought life and where your heart is, and there should be a direct correlation between the things you say, the things you believe and the way you act.
For better or worse, your actions will always follow your beliefs. For instance, I’ve noticed for myself that when I’m faced with a decision, I sometimes start stating things as if I’ve already decided when in actuality I haven’t. I’ll start envisioning an employee prospect as if they’re already working for me or a place that I might be going for vacation as if I’ve already bought the plane tickets. I often don’t even realize that I’ve made the decision, but I recognize that I have by the way I begin to communicate about it.
The problem with living in a relativistic world is that it allows your heart to continually keep an escape door open, whether it’s for self-preservation or simply “keeping your options open.” The challenge then becomes the road that you take when you are presented variables. For example, you want to keep an escape door open so that you don’t really have to commit to a relationship, whether in business or personal life. Your words and actions then become false because while you may say you’ve made that commitment; you’ve really left your options open so that you have the ability to change the situation. There can be no real objective truth (or at least that’s what the world tells us). You can take it so far that you attempt to recreate reality (i.e. “I didn’t actually say or do those things that indicated I hade made a real commitment”) to present yourself in the best possible light, all in a desperate act of self-preservation.
The truth is evil comes from us. That’s what the Bible tells us. But we still want to present ourselves in the most positive light possible; we want to be whole and complete people. We want to keep our options open, so we don’t have to be pinned down to living what we’ve already committed to. We come up with justification and newly created reality and escape clauses in order to keep ourselves seemingly whole. But the truth is we are whole and complete according to the Word of God, not because we’ve done anything to achieve it, but simply because we are God’s children. We don’t need to self-justify; we are justified through Christ.
Sometimes we make errors in judgment, and sometimes we make poor decisions. Conversely, sometimes we make great decisions and have great judgment (I attribute those to the Lord much more than us). The best way to deal with our mistakes isn’t to justify them in the context of this relativistic world; it’s to simply confess them before the Lord and those you have wronged, and to move on as the complete person you are in Christ.
About Michael Stickler
Michael Stickler is a highly gifted author, philanthropist, horseman and internationally sought-after conference speaker. His all-time bestselling book, A Journey to Generosity, is widely acclaimed throughout the Christian community. He is the Principal of Leadership Books and writes for many international publications.
His 2017 best seller, Cliven Bundy American Patriot, reveals the truth of what is known as the “Bunkerville Stand Off.”
And, now his 2019 book Life Without Reservation, is charging up the best sellers list! For the first time in his long career he is working on his first fiction book Ghost Patriot to be release in 2021.