A daily, Bible-based perspective of hope, encouragement and exhortation.
Thursday, June 25, 2020
All three of our holly bush bird eggs have now hatched! I wonder if the open throated hatchling is yelling, "Mama, I'M HUNGRY!"
"I Want To Be That Man"
Message summary: Help me to live my life with integrity!
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“I know, my God, that you test the heart and are pleased with integrity” (1 Chronicles 29:17). “And he still holds fast his integrity” (Job 2:3). “Let Him weigh me with accurate scales, and let God know my integrity” (Job 31:6).
I want to be that man
Who loves the Lord with all his heart
just like the Word commands
Who takes a stand and leads his family
as he holds the Father's hand
I want to be that man
Today I will visit Ray, a man who has made a critical component for an agricultural watering system in poultry production for over 30 years. I would like to share his photo but he is a rather private man, dutifully doing his work day after day without drama or fanfare. I have been his chaplain for over 13 years and I have observed his diligence in making the specialized part he is assigned.
I have told Ray how many hundreds of millions of people have very likely eaten a chicken or an egg that benefited from this component (a regulator in a chicken house watering system). In fact since a single regulator can service thousands of chickens I think it's very likely that most reading this who eat eggs and/or chicken have benefited by his diligence since these watering systems go in chicken houses all over the world.
Last night I spoke to Ken (with his wife Nila in the photo), who works on a farm with a large chicken house using regulators that Ray makes. Ken is a faithful husband and father who is one of those salt of the earth, backbone of America types.
Today I consider the utter craziness going on in our land and world with all the protesting, rioting, destruction, violence and increasing levels of lawlessness. Ken, Ray and many, many like them are what are keeping things going. I see HVAC service techs, carpenters, accountants, engineers and many other fields making a real contribution to life. I am confident that each Daily Encouragement reader is like them!
Character qualities such as trustworthiness, honesty, reliability, loyalty, and respect are related to one’s integrity or reveal the lack thereof. There are few things in life that can’t be forcefully taken away from us, but integrity is one. The choices we make are our own, or as some say, we own them.
Even if someone can take our life, they can’t force us to make a choice that we believe is wrong. Mario Cruz writes, “Good character and integrity are easiest to demonstrate when facing public disapproval, but the true test comes when you can potentially get away with anything because then nothing is at stake but your own conscience."
A memorable scene in the movie "Courageous" is when Javier, one of the main characters, faces a very difficult test that will reveal to others his truthfulness and integrity, or lack thereof. He passes the test and is awarded a better job for his unwillingness to compromise.
In real life it doesn’t always work out that way. Sometimes people go through what may seem like great loss as a result of acting with integrity. Daniel faced the lion’s den even though his choices in captivity revealed integrity that clearly honored God.
Today’s first verse was written by David concerning God, "I know, my God, that you test the heart and are pleased with integrity". The American Heritage Dictionary defines integrity as "steadfast adherence to a strict moral or ethical code". Biblical integrity denotes moral strength and faultlessness.
God has a powerful commendation of Job after his first testing: "And he still holds fast his integrity". Job held fast to his integrity not only through the initial testing but he endured its increased intensity over time. That’s evidence of true integrity and genuine faith. Later he stated, "Let God know my integrity". In the New Testament Peter explains that believers will experience trials of all kinds to prove that their faith is genuine (1 Peter 1:6,7).
Consider these main bedrock characteristics of one who has true, God-honoring integrity and examine your heart to see that it is true in your life:
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, You know the true content of my heart though others may be fooled by my words and actions. So it is with You that I must keep a short account and pray from a genuine heart that I will act in accordance to Your revealed will and think upon those things which are honest, just, pure, lovely, and of good report. Thoughts form in my mind before they are spoken from my mouth, so I pray that You would purify my mind, keep my tongue from evil, and enable me to stand for that which is honorable in Your sight so that I pass the tests of life and hear You say, “I am pleased with your integrity". In the name of Jesus I pray. Amen.
Dan Coates, a former U.S. senator writes, “Character cannot be summoned at the moment of crisis if it has been squandered by years of compromise and rationalization....The only preparation for that one profound decision which can change a life is those hundreds of half-conscious, self-defining, seemingly insignificant decisions made in private. Habit is the daily background of character.”
Bible teacher John MacArthur notes, “Integrity to the truth and integrity to godly character — that’s what should characterize you if you are a follower of Jesus Christ. Biblical integrity is so foreign to our world that those who have it are treated like aliens from another planet. But integrity is the badge of every true believer. That badge will bring you into conflict with the world, because the world is characterized by compromise.”
Some verses on integrity from the Book of Proverbs:
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
"I Want To Be That Man" Video Cloverdale -- Home Edition
"Rise Up, O Men Of God" Video Maranatha! Promise Band
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Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
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