Integrity has been on my mind lately as I have watched those around me deal with others who find it so easy to set their integrity aside. Even more interesting, when I started looking for quotes on integrity I had a good laugh at some of the people who have quotes about the subject. If you need some good entertainment do a search on brainy quotes for integrity.
Integrity Reveals your Character
That’s the thing, your integrity, or the lack there of, reveals so much about your character. I suppose I am a bit like Fitzwilliam Darcy in Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen when it comes to integrity, “My good opinion once lost, is lost forever.” Not to say that I can’t forgive someone, but if a person demonstrates a lack of integrity it takes a very long time to restore my trust and faith in that person.
If I demonstrate a lack of integrity in front of my children, then I send the message to them that it is not important. If family and friends see me being dishonest, then they no longer trust me. Finally, if my employer sees me being dishonest it is likely that I will be fired. I know I don’t want to be around a person that has no integrity. In my house, if you get caught lying, you get in ten times more trouble than for the original thing you tried to cover up.
Integrity is not a License for Cruelty
Brutal honesty is simply the act of being honest without a filter. It is all too often an excuse to be cruel and I am not saying that integrity is a license to be cruel at all. I personally struggle in this area. I am a very matter of fact person and so when it comes to being honest with others I have to really make an effort to do so with loving kindness. I just believe there are ways to handle things that don’t tear another person down.
Not interested in doing something with a friend? Say it is not a good time, but don’t lie and make up a fictional story to get out of it. Did an employee turn in a sub-par project? While the shortcomings of the project certainly need to be addressed, tearing the employee down gives them no hope for improvement and they may give up. Instead, this is an opportunity to show that integrity is more than just about honestly, but also strong character that desires to bring out the best in others.
Integrity Cannot Be Stolen
There are so many things that can be stripped from you in this fallen world: money, home, status, and many other things that are too numerous to mention, yet your integrity is one of the only things, aside from your salvation, that can’t be taken from you. The only way to lose it is to give it away.
I know there are some who fall into the camp who believe that circumstances force you to give up your integrity, I don’t believe that. When we give it up it is a choice. It reminds me of an incident in the book The Hiding Place by Corrie ten Boom where her sister, Nollie, was unwilling to lie about hiding the Jews. Make no mistake, in this instant I would have absolutely given up my integrity, but I can easily see why Nollie felt the way she did.
Once you demonstrate a lack of #integrity, you can easily get on a slippery slope of completely losing it.Click To Tweet
I’m not perfect when it comes to integrity, but this is an area that is constantly at the front of my mind that I diligently work on.
How about you? Do you agree? Is integrity this important to you? For instance, would you be willing to follow a leader you knew had none?