9.09.2017

May it be so!

Can you imagine making a declaration such as this?

And Job again took up his discourse and said:
“As God lives, who has taken away my right, and the Almighty, who has made my soul bitter,
as long as my breath is in me, and the spirit of God is in my nostrils,
my lips will not speak falsehood, and my tongue will not utter deceit.
Far be it from me to say that you are right; till I die I will not put away my integrity from me.
I hold fast my righteousness and will not let it go; my heart does not reproach me for any of my days.
Job 27

As we read the account of his losses and his life, we witness Job whine, lament the day of his birth, and respond in the flesh. But he does not dwell there. He whines, yes, but then he looks up - back to the heavens - back to his God, and chooses to walk in righteousness.
"... till I die I will not put away my integrity from me.
I hold fast my righteousness and will not let it go;"
When I read a passage like this my heart screams, "Yes! I LOVE this!"
But the thought that follows is, "I cannot say the same about myself." And I do not love that.

This is what the dictionary says about integrity:
in·teg·ri·ty
noun
1. the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness.
synonyms: honesty, probity, rectitude, honor, good character, principle(s), ethics, morals, righteousness, morality, virtue, decency, fairness, scrupulousness, sincerity, truthfulness, trustworthiness
2. the state of being whole and undivided.
synonyms: unity, unification, coherence, cohesion, togetherness, solidarity

And this is what God's Word says about it:

Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but he who makes his ways crooked will be found out. Proverbs 10:9

The integrity of the upright guides them, but the crookedness of the treacherous destroys them. Proverbs 11:3

Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you. Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure. Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil. Proverbs 4:25-27

→ By this I know that You delight in me: my enemy will not shout in triumph over me. But You have upheld me because of my integrity, and set me in Your presence forever. Psalm 41:11-12

May integrity and uprightness preserve me, for I wait for You. Psalm 25:21

→ For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ ... Titus 2:11-13

Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord? And who shall stand in His holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to what is false and does not swear deceitfully. He will receive blessing from the Lord and righteousness from the God of his salvation. Psalm 24:3-5 

I cannot declare with Job, "I hold fast my righteousness and will not let it go," because too often I choose sin instead of the Savior. But I want to learn how to live in such a way that I can, one day, say just as Job did, "... till I die I will not put away my integrity from me."
May it be so, Lord., I pray. May it be so.

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