When it comes to the character of a prophet, there is no more important quality than integrity. Integrity manifests itself in a variety of ways. Elisha’s servant, Gehazi, could not resist the temptation of money and goods that Naaman offered after being being healed of leprosy. It tanked his prophetic training.
If you want to sacrifice your integrity, there will be plenty of opportunities to do so. God sends what we call “integrity checks” along the way. This doesn’t mean that any of us need to be perfect. Jesus was tempted just like we were, but He held up under the temptation of the devil in the wilderness. It gives him the right to come alongside us and strengthen us in our temptation. He was human just like us. He understands what it means to be tempted. Temptation in itself is not bad. It is when we give into temptation.
I don’t know what temptation looks like for you. The devil likes to attack us when we’re down. It could be the area you’re already weak in. It could also be your area of greatest need. Maybe you need money. Someone offers you a large sum of money if you will only prophesy over them. Do you want to prostitute your gift? Do you want to sell God’s word to the highest bidder? This is not God’s way.
Sometimes an integrity check looks like doing the right thing no matter the cost. Sometimes God asks you to do something that makes absolutely no sense in your human opinion. Are you willing to trust Him and obey even if it makes no sense to your human mind? I am not talking about endangering yourself and others that could lead to dire consequences.
Sometimes it means speaking the truth in love and not telling white lies that everyone sees right through. Sometimes it means speaking out when everyone else is keeping silent in the face of obvious injustice even when it is not politically expedient. Sometimes it means enduring unjust decisions that were not in our favor. Sometimes it means waiting for the very thing that God promised that has still not happened. It could be a myriad of things.
The best way to keep your heart in the right place when it comes to matters of integrity is to constantly listen to what God is saying in today’s situation. The way he asked you to deal with it yesterday is not the way He may you to deal with it today. Be flexible. Assume a learning posture. His ways are higher than our ways and His thoughts are higher than ours. The moment we think we have arrived is the moment God wants to teach us something new. What does God want you to learn today?
By Ralph Veenstra
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