I once walked with a man of integrity. Immediately my own shortcomings were brought to light as I watched him do what was right no matter the cost. The road he walked wasn’t easy. There were few companions who had the courage to walk that path. His faith had been tested in the fire before, and it was as hard as a diamond. As I looked at him, I noticed he didn’t look to the left or to the right. He kept his eyes ahead. He knew where he was going and nothing would entice him from his course.
There were those who came alongside and walked for a while like he did. Some left sooner than others. When you walk with a man of integrity, you have a choice to make. You can change to have more integrity, or you can walk away. When we are in the light, all our flaws are exposed. We can choose to work on our flaws while in the light, or we can turn the light off, pretending the flaws are not there. Either way, when you have been exposed, you know the truth inside.
Because of this, there are many who attack those with integrity. When faced with their own reality, they try to get that person to change. When they realize they can’t make them compromise their integrity, they abandon them and try to discredit them. In the end, I’ve learned that God stands with those who have integrity and He detests those who don’t have it. If that’s how God feels, then I should feel that way too.
Proverbs 10:29 says, “The way of the LORD is a stronghold to those with integrity, but it destroys the wicked” (NLT). In my walk with this man of integrity, I’ve found that strength comes from God, not the opinions of others. When others seek to destroy, those with integrity keep walking to the Lord. They do not waiver. They do not change. They may be beaten, they may be scared, but that’s the price of integrity in a world full of houses built on sand.
Though our paths have split, I learned to be a better person. I learned that it hurts quite often to have integrity. Maybe that’s why so few choose to have it. I also learned that if you remain a man of integrity, the Lord will come to your defense and stand with you while others throw stones. I’ve learned that it is not man’s opinion of me that matters, it’s God’s. I will find my strength in Him while others attack. I will not be moved. I will not look to the side. I’ll keep my eyes on the One who lights my path.