Lately, I've found myself faced with several decisions or situations that challenge my integrity. Some of these situations can be easily overlooked, considered "no big deal", or might even seem to be a norm in society. But I believe those are the ones that challenge us the most.
I've been studying Proverbs. Two passages caught my attention in their similarities, yet they are vastly different.
Proverbs 8:1-6 - Does not wisdom call out? Does not understanding raise her voice? On the heights along the way, where the paths meet, she takes her stand; beside the gates leading into the city all the entrances, she cries aloud; To you, O men, I call out; I raise my voice to all mankind. You who are simple, gain prudence; you who are foolish, gain understanding. Listen, for I have worthy things to say.
and the the chapter continues explaining wisdom.
Then I come to Proverbs 9:11-18 - The woman Folly is loud; She is undisciplined and without knowledge. She sits at the door of her house on the seat at the highest point of the city, calling out to those who pass by, who go straight on their way. "Let all who are simple come in here!" she says to those who lack judgement. "Stolen water is sweet; food eaten in secret is delicious!" But little do they know that the dead are there, that her guests are in the depths of the grave.
You see, both call out! Both offer you something. Even folly can imitate "good" or a "shortcut" that can be justified. But to whom do you answer?
It is easy to take a seat with Folly, to get that "deserved" rest, or drink of stolen water for that is what you are "owed" in an unfair world, or even eat the secret food that you are able to get away with or maybe you just think to yourself, "I'm a good person in the long run...I can think of much worse things others have done..."
Does it really matter in the scheme of things?
Maybe some things we can get away with. Maybe some of these situations won't greatly affect the world. But your character is affected. Integrity is overrided by duplicity.
Proverbs 11:3 - The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity.
I've really been learning what it means to develop the characteristics of Christ, for He is in us. I'm definitely not perfect nor do I always make the right decisions, but I'm choosing to be aware of my actions, my thoughts, my decisions and the way they display the characteristics of Christ. What am I reflecting?
Wisdom calls out...Folly is loud...To whom do I answer? To whom do you answer?