One of the reasons Jesus made such an impact on people is that he
practiced what he preached. When he proclaimed that God’s Reign was
available and accessible, he showed it to be true by his actions. When he
embraced the leper, healed the sick and cast out demons, Jesus was
showing that a new reality really was being manifest in the world. What
Jesus taught and how he lived were in complete alignment, and this meant
that his message had authority.
Unfortunately, too many people expect to get authority from their position—
as CEO, or as politician, or as parent—but feel no need to back it up with
integrity. Then they are surprised when people resist their leadership. On
some level we are all called to be leaders—in our families, our workplaces,
among our circle of friends, or even just over ourselves. But, unless we are
willing to live with integrity—allowing our actions, our words, and our
‘position’ to be one—we will never lead effectively.
Integrity cannot be found without knowing ourselves—our strengths and
values, and our weaknesses and temptations. The best practice for self-knowledge is self-examination, coupled with a regular discipline of
confession, recognizing where change is necessary and committing to it.
Today, take time to know your own heart, and work on your integrity.
Jesus, may my thoughts, words and actions all be one, even as yours were