Insights into Integrity

by Joanna Pierce on June 14, 2017

As far back as I can remember, teachers, family friends, and leaders in my life would tell my parents I was a well-behaved child. In response, my parents would glance down at me with an eyebrow raised and say, “Really? She’s the exact opposite at home…”

I wasn’t born a sweet child, apt to listen to any adult around me. Before I learned that being on my “best behavior” was not just an outside-of-the-house concept—but when I was at home as well—there were many instructional (and disciplinary) moments in our household.

After the chaos I’d caused at home, with my Mother in an uproar due to my behavior, I would cowardly wait for my Dad to come home to be apprised of my activities. I remember, ever so distinctly, my Father and me sitting at the kitchen table, him calmly instructing me in right versus wrong. One was not to bend their legs at a right angle, and place their feet on the behind of their tottering younger sister at the top of the stairs. Nor, was one to even think about launching their sister, face-first to the bottom of said stairs.

There were many other moments throughout my lifetime when I experienced those teachable moments with Dad. As I grew, he taught me how to hold true to my beliefs no matter what, not to talk about people behind their backs (or to others), keep commitments, be trustworthy (and tell the truth), return what wasn’t mine, exhibit responsibility, and stay faithful to God and family.

He taught me how to live a life of integrity.

The just man walketh in his integrity: his children are blessed after him (Proverbs 20:7, KJV).

Our Fathers have an incredible charge to be the spiritual head of the home and to teach their children how to live right. But, half of the battle is not just teaching the lesson, it’s being an example for their children, and everyone else (II Corinthians 8:21). The lessons on integrity my Dad taught to me as a child were verbal, but I saw it physically demonstrated in his life in so many ways. Dad didn’t just talk the talk—he walked the walk.

Very recently, I heard how my Father exercised integrity in a difficult situation. In a brief moment, it was almost as if every lesson he’d taught me came flooding back to my memory. It was in that moment God spoke to me and said, “Your Father is a tremendous example of integrity.” I realized my Dad never stopped living what he taught me all those years ago. Integrity is everything, and it’s not something you ever stop—you live it for life.

According to Proverbs 20:7, because of what my Dad taught me, and the way he still lives, I am blessed.

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it (Proverbs 22:6, KJV).

Fathers—when you teach your children about integrity, it finds a lodging place in their hearts. They will set their minds to abide by what’s been grounded in them, and will find how God will bless them for their obedience.

Because of what we’ve been taught, and the numerous examples we’ve been given, we want to extend a special thanks and honor to our Dads this Father’s Day. We wouldn’t be the people we are today without your instruction. We love and appreciate you all—Happy Father’s Day.