Integrity and Hypocrisy
June 26, 2011
In our lives we choose our paths by the actions that we take. Actions have consequences some good and some not. Many times it is the fear of consequences that guide our actions, for example we may drive the speed limit for fear of getting a ticket. The point of this sermon is to look at two major factors that we encounter when it comes to the consequences of our actions and the motivation behind our actions.
The first part is integrity. The basic definition of integrity is doing what you know is right no matter who is around. Many times throughout the day we are alone, there is no body watching us, no camera to tell the story of what we have done, just our own knowledge. What do you do? In the case above, if you knew 100% that there was no one on the road, no police, and no traffic cameras would you speed? Do you swear when certain people are around and not others? Do you drink all the time but then hide it when certain guests are visiting? If any of these were answered yes then you should take a look at you integrity. I find it funny at work when the corporate people come into town and everyone gets frantic about getting things done in a hurry to make sure they don’t get any bad marks. My thought each time is; “Well if you were doing it right in the first place then you would not have to rush in the last minute.” Some of my coworkers say “Watch your back the boss is here” to which I reply “OK, I am not doing anything differently when he is gone than when he is here. It is also my opinion that not having integrity is also a form of lie. Being two faced (In this case I don’t mean talking about someone behind their back just acting differently” is also a lie. Why not just be yourself all the time and make life easy? It is obvious that you know how to act or you would not switch back and forth.
The next part of this is Hypocrisy. This in many ways goes hand in hand with integrity. This is also one of my biggest pet peeves. If you are one of the people with low integrity then what right is it of your to tell someone else what they are doing is wrong? Again using the previous example, if you speed all the time what right do you have to tell someone else that they should not be speeding? If you Smoke or drink can you really tell someone else that they cannot? For those that follow the Abrahamic religions you may have heard the term “Judge not least ye be judged” or “Those of you without sin cast the first stone.”
None of us are perfect whether you admit it or not and therefore we need to look to ourselves for improvement before we start thrusting our opinions on others. We may be asked for help from time to time but, in life our mistakes become our strengths. As a member of the clergy here I am asked to help others with problems that they may encounter but instead of chastising someone for a mistake I try to tell them how I have overcome the same problem or still struggling with in in some cases.
My message to you today is to try to live and honest life. Respect others right to be imperfect and offer aid if asked and not judgment. Before doing something ask yourself if you would still do it if someone else was around. If the answer is no, then why do it at all. My friends I am not perfect. I make mistakes on a daily basis. I try to learn from them to be stronger. I have bad habits some I am trying to overcome and some I think are mine to bear. It is my opinion that the rest of the leadership, Clergy, Masters, and Knights all have imperfections but we will all help where we can without judgment. A church is only as strong as its members so if you need help we are only a PM, e-mail, or Skype away. Be strong with integrity