Not Sure What to Do? Use the Integrity Test.

“Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but whoever takes crooked paths will be found out.”

Proverbs 10:9 (NIV)

When it comes to making decisions—big or small—the Bible offers plenty of wisdom. One principle it offers over and over again is what I call the Integrity Test.

When you’re making a decision, ask yourself, “Would I want everyone to know about this decision?”

If the thought of other people finding out about your decision worries you, then you’re probably making the wrong decision. Bad decisions lead to secrecy, and that kind of secret always leads to pain in your life.

The Bible says: “Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but whoever takes crooked paths will be found out” (Proverbs 10:9 NIV).

Notice it doesn’t say “might be found out” or even “probably will be found out.” You will be found out!

You’ve seen how this happens. You’re about to make a bad choice. You know it’s wrong, but you think, “I’ll go ahead and do it because no one will ever know.”

Then, as soon as the decision is made, you think, “Somebody’s going to find out!” And you feel the fear that comes from that. That’s when you’ve violated the Integrity Test.

When you have integrity, your public life and your private life match. What’s in your heart is the same as what other people see on the outside. What you say and what you do are in harmony.

The truth is, when it comes to integrity, you may fool everyone else, but you can’t fool yourself. And if you violate your own conscience, you have to pay for that.

James 4:17 says, Knowing what is right to do and then not doing it is sin” (TLB).

When making a decision, ask yourself: Can I do this with a clear conscience?

Violating your conscience is a big mistake. God will forgive you for the wrong you do. But forgiveness doesn’t free you from the consequences of bad decisions.

You can be forgiven and still have regrets. You can be forgiven and still face pain. You can be forgiven and still have broken relationships.

Many decisions you make are clear-cut. But what about those where it’s harder to know right from wrong? The Bible speaks to that, too: “If someone believes it is wrong, then he shouldn’t do it because for him it is wrong” (Romans 14:14 TLB).

It’s simple: When in doubt, don’t. Whatever is not from faith in your life is sin.

The next time you’re faced with a decision, follow the Integrity Test. Ask: Am I okay with other people finding out about this decision? Can I make this choice with a clear conscience? Do I believe this is wrong?

God’s given you the wisdom of the Bible and of your conscience because he loves you. The Integrity Test will help keep you on the path that God knows is for your good.

Talk It Over

  • What does it look like to have integrity?
  • When have you faced hard consequences because you didn’t follow the Integrity Test?
  • What is one decision you’ve been struggling with? Spend some time going through the Integrity Test. Ask God to make the answers clear to you.

God’s invitation is wide-open.

No matter what you’ve done or where you’ve been, you’ve got a place in God’s forever family ready and waiting for you. The invitation is wide-open. Just believe and receive.

Are you ready? Here’s a prayer you can start with: “Dear God, I know that when I die I’m going to give an account of my life to you directly. I know I have ignored you. I confessed I have sinned against you, and I have lived by my plan, not yours. I want that to change, starting right now. I want to turn away from my sins toward you.

“Thank you for sending Jesus to die for all that I’ve done wrong so that I don’t have to pay the penalty. I know that I don’t deserve your forgiveness. I know that only your grace can save me, Lord. I could never be good enough to get into a perfect place.

“Jesus, thank you for loving me so much that you took all my guilt on yourself. You made me acceptable for heaven, and I humbly ask you to save me. I ask you to save me from the sins and the habits that are messing up my life right now. I believe in you, Jesus. And I believe that you will keep your promise to save me instantly, certainly, completely, and eternally. In Jesus’ name. Amen.”

If you prayed this prayer, please write and tell me at [email protected]. I’d love to send you some materials as you begin your journey with Jesus.

Give hope, prayer, and encouragement below. Post a comment & talk about it.