“The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity.” Proverbs 11:3 NIV
Jesus said, “Love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 19:19 NIV). But in order to love yourself, you must first be able to respect yourself. And self-respect is based on personal integrity. Author Ted Engstrom tells the following story in his book called Integrity: “For Coach Cleveland Stroud and the Bulldogs of Rockdale County High School, it was their championship season: twenty-one wins and five losses on the way to the Georgia Boys Basketball Tournament...then a dramatic come-from-behind victory in the state finals. But now the new glass trophy case outside the high school gymnasium is bare. Earlier this month, the Georgia High School Association deprived Rockdale County of the championship after school officials said that a player who was scholastically ineligible had played forty-five seconds in the first of the school’s five post-season games. ‘We didn’t know he was ineligible at the time; we didn’t know it until a few weeks ago,’ Coach Stroud said. ‘Some people have said we should have just kept quiet about it, that it was just forty-five seconds and the player wasn’t an impact player. But you’ve got to do what’s honest and right and what the rules say. I told my team that people forget the scores of basketball games; they don’t ever forget what you’re made of.’” Every honest or dishonest word and action either adds to or takes away from your character. That’s what the Bible means when it says, “The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity.” So today, strive for integrity in all your dealings.