INTEGRITY:  The quality of being honest and having strong moral principles. 

  1. S. Lewis once said, “Integrity is doing the right thing, even when no one is watching.”

I really like thinking about this character trait in this way.  Integrity is not a single action that you take once in a while, it is an entire mind-set that you should live by. 

So how do we begin to live a life of integrity and continue to strengthen this character trait and why should we care about being young men and women of integrity?

Let’s look at a few biblical stories that can help us understand some reasons why

integrity is an important character trait.

In Proverbs 10:9 it is written, “Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but whoever takes crooked paths will be found out.”  When I look at this verse, I think about how when we are honest and true in our words and actions God is happy with us and we are able to live a much happier life.  If we decide to lie or be dishonest in any way, most of the time lies are exposed and trust is lost.  Once trust is lost, it is much harder to get back.  This is also found in the story of Naaman and Elisha’s servant

Gehazi in 2 Kings 5.   When we are truthful, we stay out of much trouble and you do not loose the trust of others.

Do you all remember the story of Isaac, Esau, and Jacob?  In this story found in Genesis Chapter 27.  In the story God gives Isaac and his wife, Rebekah twin boys.  Esau was born first and became a hunter.  Jacob liked quite work at home.  Isaac became very old and it was time to give his blessing to Esau as he was the firstborn, but Rebekah planned a trick.  She had Jacob put on Esau’s clothes and put animal skin on his arms so that he smelled and felt like Esau.  She told Jacob to lie to Isaac and say he was Esau.  Because Isaac was blind, the trick worked and he gave the blessing to Jacob.  When Esau came for his rightful blessing, Isaac realized the trick that had occurred.  Because of these lies, Isaac was hurt, Esau was “blessed” but then had to leave town as his mother feared that Jacob would have revenge on him, and so many things went wrong.  All of this hurt happened over a lack of integrity.  When you are not truthful, you can hurt those you care deeply about as well as yourself.

These are great stories of integrity in the Bible that are fun to read and study, but I also want you to think about things in your life that you might cause you to make a choice of right from wrong,

showing integrity or not.  Some of these examples might be:

            Lying for a friend to keep them out of trouble

            Standing on the base of the wavemasters in the dojang when no one is looking

            Cheating on schoolwork.

            Getting into sweets when you have not been given permission to have them

            These are all real situations that you need to make sure you are being honest and choosing right over wrong and being young men and women of integrity.

The great news is that in 1 John 1:9 it states that, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”  When we are truthful, we are able to stay close to God!




“ Keep me from cheating and telling lies.  Be kind and teach me your laws.” 

Psalms 119:29 (NIrV)          

“ Keep me from cheating and telling lies.  Be kind and teach me your laws.”  Psalms 119:29 (NIrV)

“Each of you should look not only at your own interests, but also the interest of others.  Your attitude should be the same as that of Jesus Christ…”  Philippians 2:4-5


This month I want you to look at a few situations and think / write how the situation was handled. 

Situation #1

Jason is a very good student except for the fact that he really does not like math so he does not do his math homework.  His parents decide that doing some extra work, in addition to his normal curriculum, might help him become more proficient and learn to enjoy math more.  They explain to him that they want him to do one extra worksheet of 5 problems per day in a book they picked up at the store. Jason is very angry and upset, “No one else has to do extra work,” he would complain.  His parent explained that this was to help him get better in basic math so that when his math classes got harder, he would not have as much trouble.  They told him they wanted to him to get the answers correct and that he would have to redo them until they were correct.  One day while his parent were outside doing some yardwork, Jason ran across the answer key to his extra math book.  He decided that he would copy all of the answers so that when he was supposed to be doing his worksheet he could quickly just write the answers in and then play for the amount of time he was supposed to be working on math.  He would not have to do or redo any of the problems.

Do you agree or disagree with the following:

  *  Jason should tell his parents what he did and ask for forgiveness

  *  Jason used the answers as he planned because it is not fair that his parent want him to do more than

his friends have to do.

  *  By not doing the extra work, Jason will continue to struggle in math.


  *  Is it fair for Jason’s parent to want him to do extra in order to make things easier in the future ?

  *  What would have been the right thing to do in this situation?

Situation #2

As a group of children were leaving the school playground, Jill saw a really sparkly pink headband, just sitting on the ground.  She picked it up and put it in her bag taking it into the building.  When it was time to head home for the day, she realized she still had the headband in her bag.  She thought about it for a bit and thought that she did not have time to take it to the school lost and found and still get to her bus on time, so she decided just to leave it in her bag.  As Jill was riding home, she kept looking at the headband, because it was just like one she had seen at the mall and really wanted.  The more she looked at it the more she thought about keeping it for herself.  She told herself that if the other girl really liked it she would not have taken it off and set it on the ground.  Jill ultimately convinced herself that it was fine to keep the headband unless someone specifically asked her if she found it.

Do you agree or disagree with the following:

  *  Since Jill found the headband, finders keepers, she should be able to keep it for herself

  *  Jill should have turned the headband into the lost and found right away or given it to her teacher

  *  If Jill had found something much more valuable, she should have turned it in, but this headband was

just a headband so it is ok to keep.


  *  Was Jill’s reasoning for keeping the headband a good one?

  *  What would have been the right thing to do in this situation? 

“Integrity is doing what is right thing, even if no one is watching.”  CS Lewis