We all care about our appearance, right? I mean image means something. I am sure that you, like me, look into the mirror every day and try and do as much as you can to look as nice as you can. Or think about social media. There are apps to make your photos look as good as possible. If you want to crop something out of the background
for the best image, you can. If you want to make yourself look tan, you can. If you want to remove the red eyes, you can.
The reason we care so much about image is that we want others to perceive us a certain way. Because of this, we post only the best-looking photos that we have in our camera roll. We would never dare post the photo if we look bad or the background is not just perfect, because then people would see the real us.
Did you know that God cares about image?
The difference is He cares about your inner image and not the outer image. He cares about the real you. The authentic you. He doesn’t care what others think about you, He cares about the real you.
This is INTEGRITY.
It is sad when the world is shocked more by an act of integrity than they are by a lack of
integrity. Integrity is when your behavior matches your beliefs. It is when there is
alignment between what you say and how you behave. You could say that integrity is
when your private life matches your public life.
In II Samuel 11, we find David staying home when the king should be away at the battle.
If you have been around church for some time, you probably are familiar with the story.
While the soldiers are away at battle, David sees a woman bathing on the rooftop of a
nearby building. He asked for a guard to bring her to him. They end up having an affair.
Months go by and she turns out to be pregnant. Now, David is in a bind. He had thought that no one would know about his private sin. He could still be this incredible king on the outside and his private mistake would never be found out. So, he then acts again. He has Bathsheba’s husband killed in battle. Yes, the man after God’s own heart is now an adulterer and a murderer. Long story short, God uses the prophet Nathan to rebuke David. David repents and gets his life right with God.
In this story, David forgot all about his integrity. You see, his private life (adulterer) looked much different than his public life (king; man, after God’s own heart). If we are not careful, we can fall into the same trap where our public life and private lives do not match. We must protect our integrity, and here are a few thoughts about how to do that:
Remember that Private sin will destroy your life.
David tried his best to protect what people thought of him. He covered it up and covered it up trying his best to protect his image. He cared more about his reputation than his integrity. You see reputation is what others think about you. Integrity is the real you. Evaluate your life for a moment. Think of your personal life. Are there things in your life that you don’t want ever to come out?
Ron Blue said it this way, “Never do anything you wouldn’t want people to find out about
or that you wouldn’t want to have to stand up and explain.”
Private sin can destroy your life.
David thought that his life behind closed doors would not have any affect on him, but it
ended up ruining things.
Be in an accountable relationship.
Lack of accountability in your private life lead to problems in your public life. Thank the Lord for a spiritual hero, Nathan. We all need a Nathan in our lives. Someone who can speak the hardest of truth into our lives when we start to loosen up on our integrity.
Keep yourself from temptation.
The hardest time to resist temptation is while being tempted, right? Think about it. The easiest time to say no to temptation is before it happens.
Therefore, we must set boundaries in our lives that help keep us from temptation. Boundaries that protect you and the people around you. Boundaries that protect your image.
Look, your image is important, but your private life is the most important. When your
private life is where it needs to be, your public life and image will be intact. So, work
twice as hard on your private life (integrity) as you do your public life.
"God isn't fooled by the filters you place on your life."