Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Proverbs 19:1 Keepin' it honest...

First, I want to shout out birthday blessings to my sister, Jodi! Praying this will be a day of great joy! She heads to Chicago tomorrow for her quarterly checkup. Please pray she will get a good report! She is extremely anemic right now (a side effect of the chemotherapy), and will be getting a blood transfusion while she is there.

Today’s verse is timely and reaches into my own classroom:

Better is a poor person who walks in his integrity

    than one who is crooked in speech and is a fool. (Proverbs 19:1) 

You can’t buy a good reputation! And once your reputation has been sullied, it’s a long way back to integrity and trust! I always tell my students at the beginning of each year that they need to guard their reputations and integrity, and that, if they had a bad year previously, they can change that this year. This year has been especially challenging in the integrity department - and I’m not sure if it’s a new trend or just happens to be an issue with this group.

I have several boys in my class who cannot tell the truth first time out no matter what. Even if I personally witnessed the transgression, one boy in my class will NOT own up to his behavior - and he follows each denial with, “I swear!” It’s almost pathological! It might take me fifteen minutes to get him to finally ‘fess up. I pursue the truth, not because I want to be “right,” but because he needs to understand that what he is doing is lying, and that it destroys his integrity. I can no longer trust a thing he says!

The interesting thing, in light of today’s verse, is that he has lots of money, and loves to flash it! He regularly carries large amounts of cash, and he offers “bribes” of treats to his friends if they will do his classroom “chores.” This week he is an officer in our class, which means he has certain duties, including staying behind with the two other officers to clean tables after lunch. Yesterday, one of his classmates told me that this boy was offering bags of chips to him to get him to take over that job! I think he has a career as a politician!

Which brings me to this week of “revelations” and inquiries in Congress! Between Benghazi, the IRS targeting conservative groups, and now the news that AP reporters had their phone records collected by the Attorney General’s office in what could be a major violation of first amendment rights, this is a week that reminds me that the truth eventually comes out. And to continue to deny the truth becomes more and more problematic!

Better to be poor with your integrity in tact, than to be found a liar and a fool! LORD, help us to walk in truth - to be transparent and honest in all our dealings. Purify our hearts and keep our mouths from lies! It’s more than our personal reputations at stake, because we represent You to the world!  

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