Success and the Temptation to Make Integrity Malleable

Building fallingWhen you see on the news that a bridge or building has fallen you will hear experts say it had an integrity problem somewhere within. Something just didn’t hold up. Something finally couldn’t stand the pressure any longer and it broke causing disastrous results.When something has integrity, it means it is solid. It doesn’t break easy.

When you say a person has integrity, you are saying the same thing…they don’t bend easily. There is a quality about them that is consistent, strong and unchanging. Success brings the temptation to rationalize a “malleable integrity”, which is really not integrity at all. Malleable integrity is outward integrity. It is the facade of integrity. The structures behind facades don’t need the same quality of integrity that real buildings need. They are fronts. They have no substance. You can’t eat in those restaurants or bank in those banks…they are just a flimsy pretend version of the real deal.

If we are going to be people of integrity we must have substance. No facades. No flimsy supports. We must depend on God. We must grow deep roots. We must be consistent…the real deal. People with real integrity don’t allow their gifts to make way for excuses, exceptions and deceptions. The thing is, the truth always comes out and people are always found out for who they really are. The private rarely only affects the private…it ultimately gets expressed in public one way or another (through our actions, attitudes, etc)…people pick up on these things. Once integrity is compromised it is only a matter of time until something gives and the whole thing comes crashing down. If the cracks were obvious we wouldn’t ever let a bridge collapse because the consequences of an event like that are devastating.