Solomon was probably the wisest man who ever lived. He was able to take simple nuggets of truth and make them memorable.
Solomon once wrote, “An honest answer is like a kiss on the lips.” That’s pretty descriptive isn’t it? Honesty and integrity are as delightful as they are desirable but they are more than that.
Integrity provides a wall of security around our relationships and us. In fact, integrity is the foundation of all the real security that we’ll experience in this lifetime. Integrity is the soil in which a successful marriage can grow. Integrity is the framework for friendships and it’s the essential ingredient for every successful partnership.
One of the world’s wonders is the Great Wall of China. It was completed in 204 BC. This amazing structure is 1500 miles long, 15-30’ thick and averages 25’ in height. It was constructed to give China a sense of security by protecting them from invading armies. Unfortunately, it didn’t work. Within the first 100 years of walls history, it was breeched 3 times. In each case, the invaders didn’t go over, under, or through the wall – they simply bribed the gatekeeper… You see, without integrity – there is no real security.
While we’d like to think that external things like walls and contracts and treaties can protect us, genuine security is found among individuals who are committed to the concept of integrity.
Jesus once said, “let your yes mean yes and your no mean no – anything beyond or below this standard is evil.” Jesus understood that much of the evil that enters is life comes through the doorway of dishonesty. Truth has been compared to fine china – once it’s broken it can be mended, but it’s never the same again.
When you consider that the average American is lied to some 200 times a day and that 91% of us admit to the regular shading or twisting the truth. A full 64% confess that they “will lie whenever it suits them as long as there is no real damage” and only 31% of Americans still believe that “Honesty is the Best Policy”
No wonder our families and friendships are so fractured. Dishonesty in any form is flat out destructive. It destroys our sense of safety and security because know one appreciates being lied to or taken advantage of. Integrity is the safety net for the human spirit. That’s why I think we’d all do better if our words where characterized by truth and our activities dominated by integrity. We may not be able to do much about the lies we’re told, but we can sure do something about the ones personally choose not to tell.