As life moves along and we grow, and grow we must or life is but a rut, we learn/realize that there are points of weakness that if not dealt with (acknowledged) and kept under control we will self destruct rather that construct.
One of the biggest struggles of my now lengthy life is in the area of integrity. I am not amazed at the level of integrity in others, but at the temptations that I have wrestled with for near seven decades. As to others I operate on the idea expressed by an elderly Mountain Woman. This saint was old, no one knew exactly how old as there was no birth certificate. In her aged fog she thought she remembered meeting Pocahontas. The stories she could tell. She often quoted what she thought was a scripture; "Every tub shall sit on its own bottom." As I admit my struggles with one of the character traits that the Lord Jesus makes much about, I attract sayings, verses of scripture and often people of a higher caliber and I am thankful for this. Such is the quote for today from Dennis Waitley:
"A life lived with integrity, even if it lacks the trappings of fame and fortune, is a shining star in whose light others may follow in the years to come."
Those of you who know me well know that I mentally underlined "even if it lacks the trappings of fame and fortune."
The point being that on occasion the price of maintaining integrity will seem great. The cost of failing to maintain your integrity is much greater.
The world is full of men and women with the "trappings of fame and fortune" gathered all around them. Yet when you catch a glimpse of what's inside them the phrase asked by Jesus flashes before your mind as a divine warning. Jesus said in Matthew 16:26:
“For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?” The losing of the soul is something that men and women, even young people fall into or dive into regularly. What do you do when you awake to the fact that the real you is bruised and battered and you are no longer upright in your heart? The second part of the above verse does not ask, "What will you get for your soul?" It does ask, "What will you give to get your soul/integrity back?" Do you need a hint? Getting your soul, your integrity back will most likely involve giving up that which you traded your true self to get. It may involve a lot of trappings. Even fame.