Thursday, February 27, 2014

Integrity, Honesty, and Sincerity ~ Psalm 15

Only those who are innocent and who do what is right. Such people speak the truth from their hearts and so not tell lies about others. They do no wrong to their neighbors and do not gossip. They do not respect hateful people but honor those who honor the LORD. They keep their promises to their neighbors, even when it hurts. They do not charge interest on money they lend and do not take money to hurt innocent people. Whoever does all these things will never be destroyed. Psalm 15:3-5 NCV 


Christians demonstrate their relationship and fellowship with God in the everyday, ordinary, getting-up, going-to-work, having-lunch, sitting-in-car line, helping-with-homework, cleaning-the-kitchen-again activities. Worshiping God is not confined to the church building. When our inner integrity merges with our outward sincerity, the heart reveals its true intimacy with Jesus. Desiring to serve or wanting to love, wishing for faith or longing for hope, simply is not enough. Behavior becomes the thermometer for our worship. Integrity exceeds doing what is right by doing it for the right reason. Sincerity has only room for truth, honor, and love. Are you lukewarm?
"In the stillness, our false, busy selves are unmasked and seen for the imposer they truly are." Richard Foster, Prayer, Finding the Heart's True Home 
 If we take inventory of our behavior, what will we find? What happens when we remove our masks: control, busyness, apathy, carelessness, greed, prejudice, rationalization, self-consciousness, comfort? Can we find justice without truth? Can we know completeness without mercy? The simplicity of Psalm 15 lays out the characteristics for a Believer who desires to abide in God's presence. So,take off the masks. Live with honesty. Work, speak, and think, making Christ the center of your intentions.
"He who does these things will never be shaken." NASB
This phrase, a promise of a faithful God, appears at least 8 times in Psalms and Proverbs.The Hebrew word mot describes something that "falters, falls, shakes, slips, or staggers." In these last words, God reminds us our completeness in Him; He is our sure foundation. While we are certain to falter, likely to fall, sometimes shake, and frequently stagger, God embraces our frailty and failures with mercy. God calls us, first, into His holiness to restore our inward integrity, then reveals Himself to others through our outward sincerity. If we walk among the bruised and broken, sit beside the outcasts and overlooked, encourage the frail and fallen, and do this in the name of Jesus, we will never be shaken. ~dho

Consider This:
- Identify the masks you wear that keep you from finding completeness in Christ.
- Will you take off the masks and enter God's holy space?

When our inner integrity merges with our outward sincerity, the heart reveals its true intimacy with Jesus. Donna Oswalt

God calls us, first, into His holiness to restore our inward life, then reveals Himself to others through our outward tasks. Donna Oswalt