Friday, October 10, 2014

Quaker's Testimony of Integrity Part II

This is the second post regarding integrity; so go here to read part one first.

Christianity Guide lists some practical ways “The Testimony or Evidence of Integrity includes such practices as. . .
  • making sure that one’s words and actions flow from one’s beliefs
  • speaking the truth, even when it is difficult
  • paying people fair wages for their work
  • giving one’s employer the right amount of labor for one’s pay
  • saying difficult things with grace and tact
  • receiving difficult sayings gracefully
  • guarding one’s reputation for honesty, fairness, and fidelity; that is faithful and loyal  
  • taking responsibility for one’s actions and their results
  • fulfilling one’s commitments
  • taking care of items entrusted to one
  • being open to the ideas of others but not being too easily swayed by them
  • confronting lapses in integrity in oneself and in others
  • giving credit to others for their contributions
  • assessing people and situations fairly and accurately
  • avoiding spending beyond one’s means through the use of credit”

Queries are thoughtful questions that remind people of the spiritual and moral values Friends seek to uphold. They help individuals and the church body to consider the true source of spiritual strength, to nurture loving relationships, and to maintain a strong Christian witness to society.

Ask yourself these queries and consider how you are and how others know you are 1) honest, and 2) stand firm:
         Are you honest with yourself as well as with others?
         Do you stand firm when an ethical principle is challenged?

Integrity with your Friendships
  • Keep your promises. Always keep your word.  If you say you can meet for coffee and someone else calls and asks you to lunch, YOU HAVE PLANS!  Show the people you have committed to that you value the time you spend together and do NOT ditch them for something (or someone) else.  
  • Don’t talk smack about other people.  If you would not say it to their face, do not say it behind their backs.  If you have not said it to their face, do NOT say it behind their back.  Doing so shows a distinct lack of integrity. 
  • Be the vault. When you promise you won't tell another living soul, DO NOT TELL ANOTHER LIVING SOUL!  Lock those secrets away and show your friends that they can trust you with their deep dark secrets.  Nobody wants a friend with "loose lips."  

Living with integrity requires frank and sincere self-examination and self-awareness.  Joseph John Gurney asked himself questions like these every day:

Have I this day been guarded in all my conversation, saying not one thing inconsistent with truth, purity, or charity?
Have I felt love toward my neighbor?
Have I done my part towards my family?
Have I been temperate in all respects and refrained from unlawful desires, habits, and anxieties?
Have I been diligent in business?
Have I given full time to effectual study?
Have I admitted any other fear than that of God?
Have I in everything acted, to the best of knowledge, according to the will of God? (Williams, pg. (172)

The next step is how.  How have I guarded my conversations today?  How have I been true, pure, and loving?  

Remind yourself that you have made a decision to live differently.  Here are three ways you can do this; though there are SO many more:

         See it!  Wall art, post-it notes with verses or phrases on how God is leading you to live serve as constant reminders.

         Wear a piece of jewelry that reminds you of a decision you have made.  This is for YOU; not for others…

  •    Get an accountability partner – someone you trust and will listen to; even when you do not want to hear it. 

Integrity is not simply telling the truth. Rather it is applying ultimate truth to each situation.  There must be harmony between one’s spiritual and physical existence. 
#Quakers #integrity 

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