I preached again in church on Sunday morning. I would like to share part of that message with you. I will be uploading this series for you to download and listen to if you like, at a later date.
This series is "LIVE WITH INTEGRITY" - and today's text is Matthew 5:33-37.
I. KEEP YOUR WORD…EVEN WHEN IT DOESN’T SEEM IMPORTANT.
Let’s look at some common “white lies”.
“I’ll be ready in a minute...” (25 minutes later)
“The cheque is in the mail.”
“If I am elected, I promise to....”
"I've told you a thousand times!!!"
“The fish was THIIIIIIS big!”
“Not tonight dear, I have a headache.”
We have all been guilty of saying phrases of this kind that simply aren’t true. But it’s so easy to justify them, because they don’t really seem that important. It’s a pretty small dishonesty in the grand scheme of things... But it’s the little things that test our integrity. It’s easier on our conscience to tell a “small” lie or break a “small” promise than a big one. We become morally outraged when we think of breaking “big promises” or telling “big lies” – but the little ones... eh they won’t hurt anyone!
Termites by nature don’t make a public announcement when they are munching away on your home. They are easily concealed. And the presence of them are made known basically when the damage is done. They are only small little creatures. They only have small mouths.
Every time a “small” commitment is broken a small amount of damage is done. Think of it as releasing termites into your reputation.
There are other kinds of lies that destroy our integrity, and it’s not because we go out to tell a lie, it’s just that we can be careless with the truth on a daily basis because we don’t see it as a big deal.
Who has heard this one?
“The dog ate my homework!”
We can mislead to make us look better...
“Oh I never said that EXACTLY like that, I was misunderstood, what I meant was....”
We give false flattery
“You look so nice today! Wow! That outfit looks so good on you” then on the inside we are thinking... actually you look like a giant hotdog.
These are the small insignificant untruths that become like termites in our integrity. Our reputation is then harmed because people learn to not trust fully what we say.
Eph 4:25 So then, get rid of lies. Speak the truth to each other
Is this speaking to you right now? Are you feeling a bit of remorse for “insignificant” lies that you may have told in the past? Can you see the damage that “insignificant” untruthfulness can do to your reputation? What do you plan to do about it?
Dear Heavenly Father,
Thankyou for always keeping your word to us all and never backing out on a promise. Thankyou that we can trust every sylable that comes from your mouth and your Word. Thankyou that you will never lie to us, never lead us to believe something that isn't true. I pray that I will adopt this same mindset. That I will be completely honest at all times, and not only that, have the ability to speak the truth in love. Forgive me for my embelishment of stories in the past, I pray you help me deal with my tendencies of over exaggeration.
I pray that I will be a good witness, and that my life will shine with truth and illuminate the way to the truth.