Looking for a good definition of integrity in an effort to define it for my granddaughter sent me to the dictionaries. Here’s what I came up with as a summary:
Having strong moral principles (such as honesty) and refusing to change, doing the same as what you say.
A few recent news items strikingly illustrate the presence or lack of integrity in some public figures:
1. “If our faith costs us a television show then so be it.” David & Jason Benham, whose show was cancelled when it was discovered that they are pro-life and support marriage between one man and one woman.
2. Governor Bobby Jindal of Louisiana: Inevitably during these interviews they say something like this – “you are a smart guy, we know you went to Brown and were a Rhodes Scholar, so tell me, how is it that you call yourself pro-life, and you say that you oppose gay marriage, and you say that you oppose gun control? You just say that stuff to get elected in the Deep South right?”
So of course, l liked to have a little fun with it, so I would lean over the desk, and in hushed tones, pretending to confide in him or her, I would say – well…just between us, do me a favor, go tell your editors the bad news, tell them that I absolutely believe everything I say. As you can imagine, those interviews ended rather abruptly.
3. Senator Mark Kirk of Illinois, in a conversation with blogger Bryan Kemper:
He talked about how important the human trafficking issue is to him and how he has vowed to fight it….Then I asked him a single question: how do you vote on pro-life issues? He smiled and said he voted on the opposite side as me.
I first asked him how he could justify saying that he wants to protect young children from being trafficked but then vote to allow killing them in their mother’s womb…He tried to say he was just being wise because he knows how liberal politics are in Illinois and he needed to keep his seat…So I asked him if keeping that seat was more important to him than doing what is right? I asked if he would be willing to lose it if he could end child trafficking and he said no.
My pastor said this morning as part of his sermon on powerlessness: “People addicted to power have already lost their integrity.”
I’d rather have Jesus than silver or gold
I’d rather be His than have riches untold
I’d rather have Jesus than houses or lands
I’d rather be led by His nail pierced hands
Than to be a king of a vast domain
Or be held in sin’s dread sway
I’d rather have Jesus
Than anything this world affords today
I’d rather have Jesus than worldly applause
I’d rather be faithful to His dear cause
I’d rather have Jesus than worldwide fame
Yes, I’d rather be true to His holy name
By George Beverly Shea, Rhea Miller
Hear it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u62uYEssk7o