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Guard Your Integrity

“Integrity gives you real freedom because you have nothing to fear since you have nothing to hide.” Zig Ziglar 

There’s a growing list of pastors, evangelists, and Christian entertainers falling very publicly to sin and immorality. It’s really nothing new. Our world is beleaguered by sin, and great men and women of faith are not immune to its snares.    

 However, now more than ever before, we have a front-row seat to their moral failures. The sordid details are delivered straight to our devices and screens. And the damage done to faith and the cause of Christ is immense. 

 In 10 out of 10 cases, the private life of these men and women did not line up with their public proclamations. Their integrity was compromised. Broken. Fractured by sin. 

 The lesson for us all: Guard your integrity at all costs!  

 The story of Daniel in the Old Testament gives great instruction on how to keep integrity intact:  

 Daniel resolved to stay on the right path.  

 “But Daniel resolved that he would not defile himself with the king’s food, or with the wine that he drank” (Daniel 1:8). 

 At the heart of Daniel’s decision was his desire to stand up for his God, no matter what.   

 It is the same for you. You must make up your mind in advance. Set your boundaries before they are in question. Know where you stand … and stay there.  

 If you know who you are, whose you are, and who you want to remain … this firm foundation will keep you strong when temptations come. 

  Daniel expected his faith to be tested. 

 It is an incredibly arrogant person who thinks they are immune to the wiles of sin and temptation. This person is just asking for trouble! The wise believer expects difficult days, and “shores up” for those times, through daily Bible reading, prayer, and accountability.  

 Daniel harnessed the power of prayer. 

 Daniel was a praying man. And God’s power was evident in his life! His “career” in the service of the King spanned seven decades. And he was delivered from a den of hungry lions without so much as a scratch.  

 Learn to pray as Daniel did. Pray in thanksgiving. Pray in praise. Pray to ask God for guidance, wisdom, and strength. Pray against temptation and sin. Pray on behalf of those you love … and those who are lost.   

 My prayer this week—Lord, help me live a life of integrity. Guard my heart and mind so that my private life matches the public one. Help me bring honor to your name, to my family, and to my calling always. Forgive me where I’ve fallen short. Continue to build a heart of integrity in me.