Personal Integrity

In 1994 at the National Youth Workers Convention held in San Francisco, I sat under the teachings of a man who had lost his integrity. That man was Richard Dortch.

From the pulpit that day, Dortch recounted the story of years of spotless ministry that all went bad over a three-year period when his public persona failed to match his private one. Dortch, now free from serving his prison term, was traveling the country making amends and preaching the message of personal integrity.

As we close this reading plan, I feel impressed to share a few of the things Richard Dortch said. The first is that massive personal failure does not come overnight. Rather, it is earned through a slow and progressive departure from what you know as truth.

Next he said, “The best metaphor for integrity is glass. Glass is solid in structure, but clear. If one looks at glass, it can be seen through. Is your life able to be seen through?”

If you are currently in a place where the windowpane of your life is not clear, but rather murky and covered in haze, the place to start is with prayer. Pray not only for repentance, but that God would give you the courage to regain your integrity no matter what the cost. Only in this way, after being pressed in the vat of God’s truth and integrity, will the life you live be truly labeled clean.


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