Your life is made of the choices you make. Every moment and every decision helps to shape your character and your habits. Effective Christians are determined to make choices that will make them more and more useful to the Lord. Paul said it this way in Philippians 3:14:
“I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”
Effective Christians are not satisfied with their current progress in godliness. This is the second in a series of five posts designed to provide habits which will help Christians extend their Christlike qualities beyond the church building and into their life every day.
Habit 2: Be Honorable. Keep your word (Matt. 5:37). Behave according to God’s standards, even when that means you will endure abuse for it (1 Pet. 2:19). Maintain your integrity. Proverbs 10:9 says:
“He who walks in integrity walks securely, But he who perverts his ways will be found out.”
Joseph was an honorable man. Joseph had integrity. In Genesis 39:7-20, part of Joseph’s life is recorded. He was sold by his brothers into slavery, was purchased by Potiphar, and then Potiphar’s wife began pursuing him for an affair. Joseph refused her, but she lied about him and Potiphar had him imprisoned. All the while Joseph had been living according to God’s standards. He had been choosing to maintain his integrity.
The question might be asked, “Why maintain your integrity if you are treated badly anyway?” The answer is in Genesis 39:21: “But the Lord was with Joseph…” Why maintain integrity? Why endure the abuse? Proverbs 10:9 says because security is found in integrity, but Joseph’s story explains why integrity brings security: because the Lord is there.
An honorable life is seen by all who know you. People appreciate and follow an honorable person. The deceiver, betrayer, swindler, and those like them will find their ability to bring the lost to God hampered by these sinful habits. Make integrity your habit. Choose to honor your word today, choose to live God’s standards today. Your habitual integrity can start today, and the light of God will shine brighter through you because of it.
Eli Schnell is the Youth and Family Minister at the Northwest Church of Christ
6059 Azle Avenue
Fort Worth, TX 76135