Standing Out in the Sea of Conformity! Part Three

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Standing Out in the Sea of Conformity! Part Three

Stand Out in the Sea of Conformity! Part Three

“Having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame.” 1 Peter 3:16

A man or woman with integrity is someone who upholds his or her values and beliefs, even when it is difficult or unpopular to do so. For example, I read a story titled Jewels Under the Saddle. It was a story about a merchant and a Camel seller who came across each other at the marketplace. They are both skilled in negotiating a deal at all times. The camel seller, pleased with his skill of worming out what he felt was an excellent price, parted with his camel, and the merchant chuffed that he had struck a fantastic bargain, proudly walked home with the latest addition to his large livestock.

On arriving home, the merchant called his servant to help him take out the camel’s saddle. The unwieldy, heavily padded saddle was too difficult for the servant to manage independently. However, something was hidden under the saddle; the servant found a small velvet pouch that he discovered on opening to be filled with precious jewels. The servant was overexcited. “Master, you bought a camel, but see what came free along with it.” The merchant was astonished as he looked at the jewels in his servants’ palm. They were of extraordinary quality sparkling and twinkling in the sunlight. “I bought the camel,” he said, “not the jewels. I must return them to the camel seller immediately.”

Titus 2:7-8 says, “Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity, and wholesome speech that is above reproach, so that anyone who opposes us will be ashamed, having nothing bad to say about us.”

The servant was shocked, thinking his master was foolish. “Master, no, one will know.” However, the merchant headed right back to the market and handed the velvet pouch back to the camel seller. The camel seller was pleased, ” I had forgotten that I hid these jewels in the saddle for safekeeping.” “Here, choose one of the jewels for yourself as a reward.” The merchant said, “I paid a fair price for the camel and the camel only, so NO, thank you, I do not need any reward.” However, as much as the merchant refused, the camel seller insisted.

Finally, the merchant said, sheepishly smiling, ” Actually, when I decided to bring the pouch back to you, I already took two of the most precious jewels and kept them for myself.” The camel seller was surprised at this confession and quickly emptied the pouch to count the jewels. However, he was perplexed. “All my jewels are here. What jewels did you keep? “The two most precious,” said the camel seller. “My Integrity and my Self Respect.” (Story by anonymous). Brethren, integrity, and self-respect are two great things to stand up for what you believe, no matter what others think. They help you be proud of who you are and never let anyone tear you down. 2 Corinthians 8:21 says, “For we aim at what is honorable not only in the Lord’s sight but also in the sight of everyone around us.”

Prayer:
1. Thank you Jesus, for your faithfulness and obedience.
2. I pray that you give me the heart to follow your will and live a life of righteousness.
3. Oh Lord, help me be faithful and honest wherever I go in my words and deeds in Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

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