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Forgotten Virtues - Week 4

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Well if you have your Bibles with you today, let's open them up to the Book of Psalms in the Old Testament, Psalms Chapter 15. I'm so glad to have all of you with us today as we are continuing in our series called, Forgotten Virtues. The very first week, we talked about the forgotten virtue of honor, who the Bible says that we should show honor to. The second week, my wife Amy talked about the forgotten virtue of purity. Last week, we looked at what the Bible says about loyalty. If you've missed any of those, or you know somebody that you think might benefit, they are all available, all of our messages, for free at Lifechurch.tv; we'd love for you to go and to enjoy and experience those. Next week, I want to talk about really one of the big problems in our society today. So many people feel entitled, a lot of people say this is an entitled generation. It feels like the world owes us everything and we are going to look next week in detail, at the forgotten virtue of gratitude. Today though, I want to talk to you about one of the most important virtues to me, and more importantly I believe to God, and that is the forgotten virtue of integrity. Could everybody say, "Integrity". Let me just tell you a little story to illustrate why this is such an important issue today. I don't know if this has ever happened to you, but I went to a convenience store to pick up something and I paid the cashier a few dollars and she mistakenly gave me more back than she was supposed to. I didn't realize it at the time. I went out to my car and I was opening up the money to look at it and there was a lot more than she should have given me. My first thought was, "Wow! God is so cool!" I mean, she gave me all of this money and then immediately I was like, "No! You have got to go back and give it to her!" So, I walked back in and I said, "Ma'am, you gave me more change than I was due." Immediately, her countenance just changed and her eyes welled up in tears and she said, "Oh my gosh! I can't believe you brought the money back! I can't believe it!" She said, "Thank you so much, this means so much to me, thank you for doing the right thing! I can't...." She went on and on and on! I said, "It's not that big of a deal!" She said, "You have no idea!" And this lady came out from behind the counter and came around and she said, "Do you mind if I give you a hug?" I'm like, "Sure!" Pat, pat, break..we're done, you know! She was overwhelmed with gratitude. She just kept saying, "I can't believe you brought it back!" I'm like, "No big deal!" She said, "You don't understand!" She explained to me this story. Evidently, she did this more often, and kept making the same mistake. First, they warned her and then she had to pay back whatever she didn't have at the end of the day. And now they said, "If you did it one more time you are going to lose your job!" She said, "I'm a single mom, I can't afford to lose my job." I'm like, "Well, I'm so glad that I was able to help you!" I was walking out the door and she just kind of, she's like, "I can't believe you brought the money back!" It's tragic that we live in a world that is more shocked by integrity than they are by the lack of integrity, isn't it? It's tragic when people are more shocked by someone who does the right thing than they are by someone who doesn't do the right thing. Why is that? Well, you can turn on the news almost every day and see the stories of the lack of integrity. It could be the athlete that everybody loved and respected and we thought, "Not only are you a great athlete, but you're a great person!" And then, this person had a whole other life going on that none of us knew about and you are like, "Oh, shocked again!" Or, it could be the politician that said one thing and then lived totally different. Or, quite honestly, let's just call it what it is, it could be the Christian leader, the pastor, the minister, or the evangelist, that said one thing and then had a whole double life going on and that happens over and over again. And not just leaders who are visible, but it could be your close friend, someone that you thought you knew and you loved and they represented one thing, but then they lived totally different. You are just like, "Oh, it happened again, a lack of integrity!" Let's do this, let's just build a quick, working definition of integrity. This is as simple as I can make it. What is integrity? If you are taking notes, write this down INTEGRITY: WHEN YOUR BEHAVIOR MATCHES YOUR BELIEFS. It's an integrated lifestyle. Integrated integrity is when what you say lines up with what you do. It's when your private life matches your public life. Someone said, "Integrity is what you do when no one else is looking." It's different than your reputation. Your reputation is who other people think you are. Your integrity or lack of integrity is who you really are. It's when your behaviors line up with your beliefs. In fact, Proverbs 11:3 says: (I love this verse!) The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity. Proverbs 11:3 Wouldn't you agree today that so many segments of society are being destroyed by the duplicity of leaders or organizations that claim one thing and yet do something else. It's tragic when people are more shocked by integrity than they are by a lack of integrity. In fact, this forgotten virtue is so important to me and so important to my family. Above all else, we truly want to be people of integrity. To tell you how important it is; when we had our first son we named him Samuel, Samuel Thompson, for several reasons. Amy's Dad's name is Sam, my Dad's middle name is Thompson, and one of my favorite characters in all of the Bible is an Old Testament character named Samuel. In fact, you can read this story in 1 Samuel 12 if you like. I love this and this is what I want my life to be about. I want my children, I want my grandchildren, to be able to do what Samuel did. Basically, at the end of his life, he stood before his community and he said basically, 'Have I lived a life of integrity? If I've wronged any of you, tell me what I did wrong and I will make it right!' Free shot! Free shot! 'Have I done anything that was not right, according to what I said I would do?' The community looked on and said, "No, you've done the right thing, you are a person of integrity!" At the end of his life, they looked on and said, "You have been a faithful man of God." More than anything else, I want at the end of my ministry and career and the end of my life to be able to say, "Free shot! Did I do what I claimed to do?" You may say, "We didn't like you, your cat jokes were stupid! We didn't like your style! But, yes you were a person of integrity, your behavior matched your beliefs." In fact, what I want to do just briefly, is look at a picture of integrity from the Bible. If there's any few verses that really capture a life of integrity, it was when David in Psalm 15, asked God the question, 'Who can dwell in the sanctuary of the Lord?' Psalm 15:1, David said, "Lord, who may dwell in your sanctuary?" In other words, who can enjoy your continual presence? Who can walk with you and fellowship with you? And God basically answers and says, 'The person who has integrity.' Watch how it's explained starting in verse 2: Lord, who may dwell in your sanctuary?...He whose walk is blameless and who does what is righteous (integrity), who speaks the truth from his heart (integrity) and has no slander on his tongue (integrity), who does his neighbor no wrong and casts no slur on his fellowman (integrity), who despises a vile man but honors those who fear the Lord (integrity, I love this part!), who keeps his oath even when it hurts (integrity), who lends his money without usury and does not accept a bribe against the innocent (integrity). He who does these things will never be shaken. Psalm 15:1-5 He who lives a life of integrity, the Bible says will what? Say it aloud, "Will never be shaken." You will never be shaken when you live not only according to your beliefs, but more importantly, according to the beliefs and the teachings of God. You will never be shaken! In fact, for a few moments, I want to just show you just directly, four benefits of the life of integrity; there are many more, but these are my favorite four benefits of a life of integrity. The first one if you are taking notes, is: 1. YOU CAN WALK CLOSELY WITH GOD. David said, "Who can dwell in the sanctuary of God?" God responds, "He who has integrity!" You can enjoy the ongoing communion and fellowship with a Holy God. I like to think of it this way; my kids, if I impart to them my values and they live according to my family values, don't you think that's going to increase our intimacy and our fellowship? Versus if I say, "Here's who we are as Groeschels, and here is what we stand for. And they say, "Forget you Dad, we don't like your values, we are going to go do our own thing, we are going to live outside the family values." I will still love them, but it's going to block our intimacy and our communion and fellowship. The same is true with God. When you live according to His values, you can walk with Him, enjoy His presence daily, moment by moment. The second thing if you are taking notes: 2. YOU'LL HAVE A BUILT IN GUIDE. The Bible says that the integrity of the upright guides Him. You are not going to have to sit around going, "You know if I do this thing, it's a little bit gray, but I think it's okay!" No, you'll just look, it's black, it's white, and this is right, this is wrong. I will do what's right. Your integrity will guide you. A third thing, and this is important to me personally: 3. YOU'LL HAVE A CONSTANT PEACE IN YOUR HEART. You will have a constant peace. When I put my head on my pillow at night, I don't have to worry, "I wonder if someone finds out! What if I get caught?" You know how it goes! "What if my boss finds out I did this? I could lose my job!" "What if I'm exposed for this thing that I'm doing?" "What if my husband finds out I've been flirting with this other guy at work?" What if my wife knows I've been looking at some things that I shouldn't be looking at?" You don't have that, you just have peace; there's no fear of getting caught, getting found out, being discovered! The flip side is I don't know anyone who lays awake at night going, "Oh man, I hope no one finds out I did the right thing! If they know I did the right thing again, this is going to cost me! Oh, I hope they don't find out I did what was right!" You have this constant peace when you do the right thing. And then fourth if you're taking notes: 4. YOU GAIN TRUST, RESPECT, HONOR, AND INFLUENCE. When you live a life of integrity, you will gain trust, respect, honor and influence. If you want great children, be a parent of integrity. If you want to be a great leader of your family, be a husband and a man of integrity. If you want influence in the business community, be a person of your word. When you have integrity, people will follow you, they will honor you, they will listen to you, they will seek your wisdom and advice because you are a person of integrity. The challenge is though, so many people aren't. In fact, what would you say is the opposite of integrity? I will help you out. It's what non-Christians often say about Christians; they'll say, "Oh Christians, they're just a bunch of..." what? "Hypocrites", right? That's really the opposite of integrity, it's a hypocrite. In fact, the Greek word that's translated as hypocrite, it very literally means an actor, it's an actor. You may remember the Greek plays, it's kind of goofy looking but you see a guy with like a little stick, with this face or this mask on it and they would do this deal and go around. Then they would pull out another one, they're somebody else, that's how they would act. It's a mask, this is not who I really am, but this is who I'm pretending to be, which is so common in our world today. I'm going to represent this one person, when in reality I am not that. Let's just call it what it is. We all have hypocrisy at different points in our lives. We all do. I can remember one of the times I got caught in one of the most embarrassing moments of hypocrisy you have ever seen. It was when life was simple, we just had four, very easy, low maintenance kids. Life was much easier then! We had just had our fourth child and we wanted a swing that would attach to our swing set to put the baby in. This swing was $79.00! I'm like, I'm not paying $80.00 for a stupid swing! So, we prayed for God to help us find one at a garage sale. If I'm lying, I'm dying! The very first garage sale we went to, they had the exact swing! I looked over to Amy, and we were like, "God is so good!" It was marked $30.00, I would have paid $40.00 and been the happiest dog in town! Immediately, I went in to negotiation mode. I walked up to the lady and I was like "Oh, it's a nice swing, but it's got a big scratch on it, will you take $15.00?" She looked at me like punk, game on, let's go for it! We started entering this vicious garage sale negotiation! She's like, "I won't take a penny under $29.00!" "I will give you $16.00!" We were going back and forth and finally we stalled. She said, "$25.00" and I'm at $18.00, and I pulled out my trunk card, I said, "Ma'am, I've got to be honest with you, I'm a Dad with four very expensive kids and I'm a pastor of a small struggling church in town. Could you give me a break? All I've got is $20.00, that's all I've got! Would you give me the swing for...." All of a sudden her countenance changed and she said, "Ah, my Dad was a pastor and we always struggled financially. Since you are a pastor, a man of God, sure I'll give you the swing for $20.00!" I go, "Thank you! That means so much, God is going to honor you and bless your garage sale!" I opened up my wallet and all I had in there was a $100.00 bill! I was like, "Wow! God just multiplied it, 20 to 100!" And she said, "Thank God in Heaven, the price is now $30.00!" I mean totally busted on the spot! Liar, liar, pants on fire! Pastor Craig does not have integrity whatsoever! I mean, busted on the spot! Lack of integrity! All of us at some point or another, we do, we lack integrity. It's often so hard to see in ourselves. We will justify it in our own behaviors and God hates it. In fact, if you look at Jesus you will see that He was far harder on hypocrites than He was on prostitutes and adulterers, and people with all sorts of other vile sins. I will give you an example. In Matthew 23:25 and following, Jesus looked at the hypocrites and He said, "Woe to you." Now, whenever Jesus said woe to you, what He was basically saying is, 'You are in so much trouble, you have no idea how bad this is going to be for you.' He was pronouncing judgment on them and He said: Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean...In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness. Matthew 23:25-26, 28. You play actors, you who lack integrity. In other words, you are putting on a good game face. You look religious, you look righteous. You are showing the outside to be clean but your heart is filthy with sin. He goes on to call them blind Pharisee. In other words, you don't even see it, you are so blind to your own hypocrisy. He says first clean the inside of the cup and dish and then the outside will also be clean. Integrity doesn't start from the outside in, it starts from the inside out. Be pure on the inside. In the same way, He says, on the outside you appear to people as righteous. You've got your mask going, but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness. Woe to you who lack integrity! You who are full of hypocrisy. It's so easy to do, isn't it? Be honest! It's so easy to put the little mask on and play the game, when the inside of the cup and dish is filthy before God. So, let me ask you this question. I want you to think about it and don't just give me your response kind of in your own mind of what you want to believe, but look at what your life says. How would your actions answer this question? Here's the question: WHAT IS YOUR INTEGRITY WORTH? What is it worth to you? What is your integrity worth? Not just, "Oh, yeah a lot! Oh yeah, everything!" No, what do your actions say that your integrity is worth? For example, let's say that you lie on a resume to get a better job. Well then, your integrity is worth whatever that job paid. That's what your integrity is worth. You just took your integrity and said, "I'm willing to trade that for some perceived benefit. That's what my integrity is worth." What's it worth to you? Many would say, "Well, it's worth much less." Because you might have embezzled something from your work, oh something small. Maybe a ream of paper to use on your home computer. Well then, that's what your integrity is worth to you, whatever the ream of paper costs. That is what you're saying by your actions your integrity is worth. Or maybe you falsified an expense report. You put something down that was a personal expense and you made it look like a business expense. That is what your integrity is worth. Maybe you're married and finances are tight, so when you buy an outfit you hide it for awhile. One lady said, "What I do is I buy an outfit and I hide it for two months and then I put it on and when my husband says, 'Is that a new outfit?' She says, No I've had it for months!" Some of you are going, "That's what I do!" Others of you are going, "That's a good idea!" No! It's not a good idea! That's what your integrity is worth! Some of you might be in business and occasionally you over-bill, just a little bit, because you know the client can afford it. Or, you cut some corners along the way. Maybe just with your friends you exaggerate a story just to be liked. Or perhaps you tell your spouse you love her and honor her and yet you look at impure images all of the time. Maybe you're a student and you really want to get the good grades, it will help you get into medical school or law school. Or you just need to keep your GPA and so you cheat on an exam, or you cheat on a paper just to get by. That's what your integrity is worth to you. What is your integrity worth? Not just what you say, but what does your life say that it's worth? There's a guy in the Old Testament, a really interesting story of a guy by the name of Job. If you asked Job, "What is your integrity worth?" He would have said and lived, 'My integrity is worth more than my life itself.' Let me tell you his story, in case you don't know it. Lucifer or Satan, was criticizing God's people saying; 'You know they don't really love you, they're just faithful to you because you're good to them.' God said, 'No, there are some who really love me.' And Satan's like, 'Who? Show me one!' God said, 'Well, there's this one guy, he's full of integrity, I promise you he is faithful to me; his name is Job.' Satan's like, 'Give me a shot at him, let me see if he really loves you.' So, it's kind of odd, God says, 'Take your best shot at him.' So, Satan goes and strips Job of all of these things that really matter to him. And his wife interestingly turns on him, his friends turn on him. His wife says, 'Hey, why are you hanging on to your integrity? Why don't you just curse God and die? You big old loser!' That what she said! His friends say, 'You know you've done something wrong. All of these bad things wouldn't be happening to you if you were a person of integrity. Quit claiming you are a person of integrity!' Here's what Job says, very interesting, Job 27:5-6 he basically says, no matter what you say: ...I will not deny my integrity. I will maintain my righteousness and never let go of it; my conscience will not reproach me as long as I live. Job 27:5-6 My integrity is worth everything to me! You can take away everything else, but you cannot take away my right to choose to honor God in every way that I live. That is what my integrity is worth to me. It's worth everything to me, everything! What is your integrity worth? I'll tell you a story that really impacted me. Years ago, I had a coach that just imparted tremendous values to me. We lived in Texas and moved up to a small town in Southern Oklahoma, I played very competitive soccer and baseball. We moved to a little town called Ardmore, Oklahoma. At the time they didn't have high school soccer. So in the fall, like what am I gonna play? And I just thought, well I'll try tennis just for fun, or actually there was a cute girl that played tennis, and I thought, oh I will try that! So I took up the sport and oddly I made the team my very first semester, I was the last guy on the team. But it was a very good team and I just liked the sport and I said I would stick with it for a year and I ended up continuing with it. I had a coach named Ken _____ and this guy was an integrity freak! We went on a trip one time and at the end of the evening we all went out to play Putt Putt. A very annoying little game where you try to get the ball in the stupid little hole and girls beat you all of the time! I hate the game! At the end of the 18th hole, you can putt the ball into the hole and it generally goes down a tube and into a box so you can't steal the ball. All of my buddies decided we wanted our own putt-putt ball, so on the last hole we just put our foot on a little hole and we'd putt it up to the foot and then take the ball and stick it in our pocket, so we could have the ball. We went back to the room and all of us had our little putt-putt balls. I happened to be the only guy laying on my bed with my feet on the wall tossing my purple putt-putt ball off of the wall, when Coach Ken _____ walked in and said, "Hey Craig Groeschel, where did you get that putt-putt ball? I was like, "Uh, I don't know!" He said, "You're off the team!" I said, "What do you mean I'm off the team?" He said, "If you'll steal a putt-putt ball, you'll steal other things, you don't have integrity, you're not playing for me!" I'm like, "Oh no, please! please!" I started begging him. He said, "Let's go outside and talk." He sat me down, I never will forget it. He said, "Craig, if you have integrity, that's all that matters and if you don't have integrity, that's all that really matters. You want to play for me? You are going to take the ball back, tell the manager you stole it and you are going to live a life of integrity." So, I went to the manager and was like, "I stole this putt putt ball, I'm really, really sorry." I gave it back. The thing that stuck with me were his words. Never will forget it. If you have integrity, it's really all that matters. If you don't have integrity, it's really all that matters. That phrase stuck with me. A few years later, I ended up playing college tennis. It was a really good top-rank national team. Again, I was on the bottom end of this team. So, I'd go back to my home town in the summer to teach tennis lessons to make money and I assembled a group of all of these kids and we would play. They were beginners and to make it fun at the end of the day I would say, "Okay, all of you can play me and if you beat me, I will give you my very expensive racket. I will give you my racket." They were beginners, so there is no way that they could beat me, so I would let it get real close. We would play until 10 points, I'd let it get to be 7 all, 8 all and then I would just finish them off and make them cry! Lots of entertainment, really fun! So, we were playing this one guy and he was really competitive, wasn't any good, but really competitive and I let it get to 8 all. The next shot he hit, it hit the top of the net on his side, and then it just, real rare at his level, the ball rolled over on my side and he was like, "Oh, 9-8!" I'm like, "So what, loser! I'm still going to put you away so easy, it's not even funny you're going to cry to your mom at the end of the day!" So the next shot, sure enough, he did the same freaking thing again! The ball hit and then it rolled over on my side! He threw his arms up! "It's 10-8, I won! Your going to give me your racket!" I'm thinking these real religious thoughts like, "Oh crap, that's my racket! What am I going to do!" So, immediately in my mind, I'm working out what I'm going to do! I told you I'd give you my racket, but I will give you my cheap, wooden racket that I've got at home! I'll give you my back up, no good racket! I'm hearing this annoying little voice going, "When you have integrity, that's all that matters!" I'm like, "Shut up! This is my racket, this is my livelihood! I'm trying to rationalize it and so finally I went, "Okay, here's the racket! Hope you enjoy it!" He didn't even say thank you! But it's true, when you have integrity, it's all that matters. When you don't have integrity, that's all that matters. So, let me ask you, what do you do when you realize that you don't have integrity? Let's call it what it is! It happens all of the time. It breaks my heart to see how often you've got, Life Group Leader, I am great Life Group Leader and the dudes abusing his wife or looking at pornography! Or, a woman of God, oh yes, she's a prayer warrior and she's sleeping with some guy from work! Oh, great business leader who is cheating people right and left. Or it could just be smaller things, "Oh yeah, I'm a Christian and I just lie habitually!" What do you do when you recognize that you lack integrity? Well, here's just a few things. First of all, get to know Jesus, truly get to know Him. Not from a distance, I want to study about Him. Get to know Him personally. Because let me tell you right now, you can never live a life of integrity on your own, you are bent towards sin. The only way you can do it is to get to know Him personally and you allow the indwelling Christ, through the presence of the Holy Spirit, to lead you to do what is right. You get to know Him. You truly get to know Him and you let Him start to live through you. I would sincerely suggest that you go and you apologize and you repent to those people around you that you have misrepresented yourself. You just say, "You know what, for the last however many years, I have not been true. I've lived a life of hypocrisy, I've been a play actor. Will you forgive me?" And you ask for forgiveness. You ask for forgiveness. They may not trust you yet, because you are going to have to rebuild, or build for the first time a life of integrity. Then, you simply start doing what Jesus said, very simply, He said in Matthew 5:37, He said: Simply let your 'Yes' be 'Yes,' and your 'No,' No'. Anything beyond this comes from the evil one. You become a person of your word as Christ lives through you. It's that simple. You let your behavior line up with your beliefs, but not just your beliefs, more importantly, they line up with God's beliefs. When you do, you'll walk with God, you'll have a built in guide. You will have a peace all of the time and you will gain honor, trust, respect and influence from those around you. That's where we have to start. Take off the stupid little mask, bring the real you and let God work, because it really does matter. At all of our locations, I'm teaching right now from our Oklahoma City Life Church. And right over here on this side, years ago there was a smaller building that we built. I had an experience with this guy I had just met. I will never forget as long as I live. After I got through teaching I was talking to people. This guy came up and he had this very familiar kind of dazed look. You could tell he had just experienced God in some significant way. He was kind of rattled and he said, "Oh my gosh, it was like you were talking to me. You led me in that prayer and I just prayed to give my life to Christ and I can tell something's different." You could see it on him, he was different. Then, he looked at me and said, "You don't remember who I am, do you?" I said, "You look familiar, but I don't." He said, "Years ago, you used to teach me tennis lessons. I said, "You have my racket!" And he said, "No, no, no! I don't have your racket, but I was there when that whole racket thing happened, and none of us could believe that you really gave your only and best racket to that guy!" He says, "The way I see it is, if you were a person of your word then, you are probably a person of your word now, and I trusted everything you said about Jesus and that's why I chose to give my life to Him." At that moment, it sank in like I could never, ever describe to you. When you have integrity that is all that really matters, and when you don't have integrity don't kid yourself, you're not going to have a good marriage and you're not going to be a good parent and you're not going to be a good friend; because if you don't have integrity, that's all that matters as well. It's tragic, it's tragic, when the world is more shocked by integrity than they are by a lack of integrity. And as far as we are concerned, we will not be that way. We will live an integrated life under the Lordship of Christ and our behaviors will, by the power of the Holy Spirit, line up with our beliefs, God's Word, and with His help we will be people of integrity. All of our churches praying together, let's go before God. God, we ask that in your presence your Holy Spirit would do a work on us that only You can do. As you are praying today, here's what I want to encourage you to do. Nobody looking around, I want you to be really honest and just ask God to show you any area or pocket of life that may lack integrity. Here's what I've noticed, the closer you get to God, the more He shines His light on your heart and soul the more of our darkness is revealed. For me, the closer I get to God, the more I see the hypocrisy in my own life. Today, rather than going, "Oh, I am a big loser and feeling guilty," I want you to see this as an opportunity to bring another part of your life under alignment with Christ. See it, feel it, sense it. God wants to reveal any area of your life that is not pure and clean and right before Him. Just ask Him to show you. Some of you right now, you already know what it is. It may be many areas, maybe a pocket of your life that lacks integrity. We are going to take that to God today. If God is showing you something right now that really isn't lining up with who He is, would you lift up your hands right now and say, "I want to make it different." Lift them up right now, lift them up! Okay, go ahead and put them down. For all of you that did not lift your hands up, I'm so glad you're perfect, I really am, I really am! I mean I'm being sarcastic but are you serious? Are you that holy? God show us! God, as we confess our sins to you (just name it and say what it is to God, just here it is), we ask for you to forgive us. Oh God, we thank you that your grace is greater than we could ever imagine, that if we confess our sins to you, you are faithful and just to cleanse us of all our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. God, forgive us for our hypocrisy. Forgive us for every area that we lack integrity and God I pray that the power of your Holy Spirit would indwell our hearts. God, when we cannot live a life on our own that pleases you, because of who you are in us, you would lead us to a life of integrity and godliness and righteousness. God I pray for restored relationships. God I pray there would be those who would confess, "I have not been true in this area of my life, I pray for forgiveness, I pray for restoration, I pray for healing." God, I pray that you would bless businesses that are full of people who are full of integrity. God I pray that you would bless dating relationships, when one would say I have not treated you with love and honor and respect and I've used you for my own pleasure. God, I pray that you would bless those relationships as they confess and live in such a way that would bring honor to you. Make us oh God, people of integrity. As you keep praying today at all of our churches, nobody looking around. I want to ask you, are you truly a follower of Christ? Are you a follower of Christ? I grew up going to church and kind of doing a 'church thing', but I had so many different masks it wasn't funny. I had my mask that I'd wear around my friends who were athletes, then I had my mask I'd wear around my parents, and then I had my mask at church and my mask at school. There were times I would get confused and I couldn't remember which one I was supposed to be. So lacking integrity, so full of hypocrisy. So, I tried to be a good person, and I realized no matter how hard I tried, I could never quite get it together. I didn't realize that the Bible said I couldn't, I was a sinner and my sins separated me from God and there was no way I could ever be good enough for God and you can't either. Some of you, you've played that game. You've got the Christian mask on, but you are not truly a follower, a disciple of Jesus. Others of you, your life is not anywhere close to honoring God and you recognize that, but you are feeling drawn to God right now. What is that? That's the Holy Spirit of God, that's why you are here today. God brought you here today because He is pursuing you. You may feel like, "Well, I'm not good enough for Him." I'm going to tell you right now, you will never be good enough for Him! But He wants all of your heart. Just have the integrity to say, "I am a sinner, I need a Savior." When you call on God's Son, the only One who truly had integrity, the One who was born of a virgin without sin, who died on a cross and rose again, when you call on His name, He will be your Savior. He will forgive you, He will transform you, He will make you new. That's why you are here today, you can sense it. At all of our churches, those of you who would say, "Yes, that's me; Jesus, I'm ready to give my life wholly to you, with every bit of integrity, I ask you to save me and I want to become one of Yours!" If that's you today, would you lift your hands high right now, would you lift them up and say, "Yes, that's me!" All three or four of you right here together, God Bless you guys. Way back here toward the back. Let me just meet you eye-to-eye, I want to see you. Right back over here on the side section, God bless you ma'am. Way back over here, all of you right up here, God Bless you guys. Sir, right back here in the middle section, a man of God being born. Others of you today. Right up here, ma'am right there, God bless you! I want to look at you, right back over here, praise God for you, my friend. Ma'am right here, right back over here ma'am. Others of you who would say, "Me too!" Right back here, down here in this side section, right here, sir, God bless you! Others of you who would say, "Me too!" Right back here, down here in the side section, right here sir, God bless you! Others of you who would say, "Me too!" Right back there toward the back, praise God for you! Others of you, step into it! The Holy Spirit is here, He is working, He is drawing people unto repentance. Others of you who would say, "Me too! Jesus, take all of my life, all of my life!" Pray, at all of our churches aloud, just everybody pray! Heavenly Father, save me from my sins, make me new. I believe Jesus died for me so I could live for you. Take all of my life, it is yours. I am not my own, I now belong to you. Fill me with your Spirit so I could serve you for the rest of my life. Thank you for new life, now you have mine. In Jesus name, I pray! All of our Life Churches, would you take a moment to worship the One who makes us new!

Video Details

Duration: 37 minutes and 45 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
License: All rights reserved
Genre: None
Views: 56
Posted by: lifechurchopen on Jul 7, 2010

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