How many states are in the United States of America?

Our President-elect thinks it’s 57.

Funny coincidence, Organisation of the Islamic Conference actually does have 57 states.

Which brings me to the main reason for this post…

Being a person of Integrity.

I recently blogged about our staff devotions, how Pastor Steve was talking about being a true person of integrity and character.  I have more thoughts on that.

Our character defines who we really are.

There is a saying, “You don’t know what’s in a tube until you squeeze it.”  That is true of us.  Who we are in everyday life should be who we are when we’re ‘squeezed.’  What happens behind closed doors when it’s just the Holy Spirit watching you?  Would you do or say the same things in public?

Image vs. Character

The Nike corporation has a slogan, “Image is everything.”  But it’s not.  What you do behind closed doors shows your true character, and that true character will be revealed in your image.

Mark 4:22 says – “For there is nothing hidden which will not be revealed, nor has anything been kept secret but that it should come to light.”

I took it upon myself to look up the word “nothing” in the dictionary.
There were quite a few definitions, but this one got to me:  “something or someone of no importance or significance.”

Something or someone of no importance or significance.  So, the little things that you don’t think matter, matter to your character.  The people who you associate with who you find so insignificant, are actually significant to your character.

The Word says in I Corinthians 15:33, “Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.””
Bad company corrupts your good character.  The people you spend time with should be people who can help improve your character, not drag you down.

It’s hard for me to say this and not feel like a jerk, but there are so many people that I have had to cut out of my life because they were corrupting my character.  It’s a really hard thing to do.  But since I truly love those people that I have had to cut out, I can say with confidence, that my image has greatly improved.  Not only has my ‘behind closed doors,’ character grown, but it is showing in my image.  And more and more I am seeing the image of Christ, who we are to be imitators of.
The things you put in you are the things that come out.  Sometimes it takes hard decisions to get you where you truly desire to be, to do what is right for you and your relationship with Christ.

This weekend while listening to Pastor Steve teach us about prayer, the Holy Spirit brought a thought into my mind and it has been bouncing around since.

What did it take to get you where you are?

A lot.

Tonight I will be giving a short testimony at Celebrate Recovery.  There is a huge part of me that utterly despises speaking about my past, but then I get to tell them about the “story book ending” to my tale.
Not only was I a companion to the wicked and loved their wicked ways, but I was the wicked one corrupting others’ good character.

1 Happy are those who don’t listen to the wicked,
who don’t go where sinners go,
who don’t do what evil people do.
2 They love the Lord‘s teachings,
and they think about those teachings day and night.
3 They are strong, like a tree planted by a river.
The tree produces fruit in season,
and its leaves don’t die.
Everything they do will succeed.

Psalm 1:1-3

I love verse 29:11 in Jeremiah.  “I say this because I know what I am planning for you,” says the Lord. “I have good plans for you, not plans to hurt you. I will give you hope and a good future.”
That is my story book ending to my tragic tale.  Before I was even born, I had a good future.

But in order to get there, I must be fully mature in my Christ-like character.  I want my character to match my image.  And I was created in the image of Christ.

2 thoughts on “Question!

  1. What a good blog. I haven’t had a chance to tell you this in person but I have seen such a huge change in you this past year. It really shows on you. Your whole countenance is different. I know that we only see one another in passing most of the time but you don’t have to hang out with someone to see that they have changed. The change in you has been very noticeable. I just wanted to let you know that. Have a great day!

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