Glimpses of grace seen in the everyday

Posts tagged ‘integrity’

Breaking the Pattern

Joseph came from a long line of deceivers.

His great-grandfather Abraham passed off his wife as his sister to save his own skin—twice!

His grandfather Isaac did the same.

His father Jacob cheated his twin brother Esau out of his blessing by passing himself off as his brother, deceiving their blind father.

His great-uncle Laban cheated his dad (Jacob) by passing off his older daughter as the younger one behind the bridal veils.

His own brothers passed Joseph off as dead after selling him as a slave to Egypt.

So what was Joseph to do when faced with continual sexual harassment on the job?  Would he also cheat his employer by giving in to that seductive wife?  What about his job security?  After all, as a slave he had no rights at all, even though he was in charge of the household. 

By God’s grace, Joseph had the conviction and courage to break the chain of deceit, refusing to save his own skin.  He would rather lose his job and be thrown into the dungeon for years than do what he knew in his heart was wrong. 

Do you and I dare to be a Joseph? 

Wrong is wrong

Portraits of Integrity—or otherwise

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 best domain
And 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

Than to be a king of a best domain
And be held in sin’s dread sway
I’d rather have Jesus
Than anything this world affords today
Read more at http://www.songlyrics.com/george-beverly-shea/i-d-rather-have-jesus-lyrics/#2qCQ8AXlFiT8iR0m.99

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 best domain
And 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

Than to be a king of a best domain
And be held in sin’s dread sway
I’d rather have Jesus
Than anything this world affords today
Read more at http://www.songlyrics.com/george-beverly-shea/i-d-rather-have-jesus-lyrics/#2qCQ8AXlFiT8iR0m.99

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

One of the Saints

In the country where I live, November 1 is a big day at the cemeteries.  People arrived all day with flowers, tables and chairs and food.  Some even stayed overnight next to the graves of their loved ones.  It’s All Saints’ Day, and the next day (so no one will be left out) is All Souls Day.

Ken Anderson & wife, Christian film maker

But to me, November 1 is the day for remembering one of those saints in particular:  my dad.  That is the day on which he entered his heavenly home thirteen years ago.  He was a saint, not because he was perfect, but because that’s what God calls those who become His children through by receiving the forgiveness and new life He offers through Jesus.  (See John 1:12; 1 Corinthians 1:2.)

I honor my dad for many things that he taught me, whether intentionally or just by example.  Here are some of them:

–To love his spouse and honor her.  (I never heard them argue but I often caught them smooching Red heart.)

–To love the Bible.  I would often find him reading it in the morning in his favorite chair.  And he knew how to simply share the message with others, both in church and around the supper table.

–To have fun and enjoy life Smile.  We went camping and enjoyed spontaneous picnics and drives in the country.  We had Family Nights with games, silliness, and snacks. I remember so well his contagious smile.  We even had our “secret” family recipe for candy that he would supervise on special occasions—Yum!

–To put God first in financial affairs. I remember the chart on which he kept track of the family’s giving to several missionaries and other ministries, even on a meager salary.  He and Mom taught me from an early age to give generously to the Lord and also to save for the future.

–To do what is right no matter what.  There were times when this was painful and unpopular, but he wouldn’t back down.  And he was respected for it.  By his example, I learned courage and sisu*.

–To love reading.  To always be truthful.  To honor family and friendships.

–To do one’s best. He made some beautiful things out of wood. He expressed confidence in me and pride in my efforts and accomplishments.  I especially appreciated his help with studying the night before a test. 

–To accept one’s limitations and make the most of them.  He joined in the joking about his lack of musical ability and his short stature.  But to me, he was a great man.  I look up to him and am pleased when someone remarks how like him I am.

 

* Sisu (pronounced – see’-soo) is a unique Finnish concept. It is a Finnish term that can be roughly translated into English as strength of will, determination, perseverance, and acting rationally in the face of adversity.  (finlandia.edu/sisu-our-finnish-identity.html)

Tag Cloud