In the last few weeks i have had a number of conversations with people about doing the right thing. Some of these conversations have been trivial, you know the sort of thing, do i get another beer, do i have an extra serving of crumble, that type of thing. But some have required strength of character, a sense of honour, and the ability to trust in God that you are doing the right thing. A minister friend of mine who i have known for longer than he would like to remember, made a very serious decision earlier this year, he resigned his ministerial credentials, he just never renewed them. He has over the years earnt my respect and my love for him, despite him being a Liverpool fan has grown in the 22 odd years i have known him. The decision was hard to make but he felt that in all honour and integrity he had to do it.
And this brings us to the crux of the matter, over a coffee at a costa ( i do not attend these places unless i'm with him by the way), he explained his reasonings behind why etc. He had worked within his particular denomination for over 20 years, so it was no drop and run process. But he got me to thinking, as Christians we talk of integrity, we talk about honour, we talk about how we are different than the world at large, but are we? Do our actions get dictated by tradition, do they get blasted by our own desires, worse still do we neglect to consult with God on those things that matter. Integrity HAS to be a large part of who we are, wether we are Christians or not. This last month there have been times, i have been less than honourable, less than nice and far from Christian. My failings have affected relationships i have, but not to a level of destruction. Integrity is not a commodity we throw around, its not a word we chuck in to make ourselves sound superior, it's got to be a life style choice. Sometimes those choices are hard and friends, family and church can poke their well meaning noses into the pot to stir it in the wrong direction. Yes it's good to listen to people, but people can come with an agenda, an agenda of their own that maybe at odds with Gods agenda for our lives. You above all people know what God is telling you to do, you alone are going to be responsible for how you act. Yes sometimes the choice is easy and as we say in my neck of the woods a no brainer. Sometimes it requires commitment and above all sacrifice to achieve the end result. Yes we can have another beer, yes an extra potion of crumble. But lets actually be honest about where we are, where we are going and how God fits into it all. To many people will hold back on doing Gods will because it means the habits of a lifetime need to change, or we move out of our comfort zone. It's time to shape up and let the rubber meet the road