David prayed for integrity in Psalm 25. He understood that a person of integrity is not plagued by fears haunting him and giving him sleepless nights. Integrity becomes a guide to a person who is upright in heart. His conscience is clear in the sight of God and man, and he can rest securely. A clear conscience brings peace to our minds. Living a life of integrity decreases our levels of stress.
But, the person who lives by double-standards and deceives people, has ample reason to miss a good night’s rest. His restless heart will haunt him and his fear of being caught out will have him constantly looking over his shoulder. He may sometimes react rather drastically to a perceived threat that never was real. Many of his decisions may be irrational since they are based on the haunting fear of being found out and exposed as a dishonest and double-dealing person. There is no peace for the wicked.
The word translated as unfaithful is the Hebrew word bâgad which means to act or deal treacherously, faithlessly, deceitfully, and to offend. People who live their lives in treacherous ways, not keeping their promises, deceiving others and offending them in order to achieve their selfish purposes will self-destruct. “The unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity.“
If we tell the truth we can rest easy, even if the truth appears not to be immediately beneficial to us. We can be assured that, since the truth always wins out, we will be the winners for sticking to the truth and live our lives with integrity. However, if we bow our knees to the father of lies (John 8:44) and find our refuge there, we will be robbed of peace and with a lack of peace comes an increase in our levels of stress.
Although we develop stress for various reasons (physiological and psychological for example), we can at least get rid of the added stress that comes from a guilty conscience if we make up our minds to live in integrity. We may not be able to control everything that life throws at us, but we do have control over this: How we choose to live. Do we choose to live in integrity or do we choose to slither our way to the top through lies and deceit? Will we trust God to work out an issue for us, or will be take matters into our own hands and tell a few lies to get out of trouble? The decision is ours to make.
That being said, it makes so much more sense to live our lives with integrity, for then we are free from the unnecessary stress that comes with deceit and lies. So, instead of taking our refuge in falsehoods and deceit, let us put our hope in God to protect and rescue us from those difficult situations in life.
May integrity and uprightness protect me, because my hope, Lord, is in you. (Psalm 25:21)
- I would rather my child grow up to have this than a successful career. (djconnet.wordpress.com)