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Yes, Integrity Matters!

Monday, July 9, 2012 (1:52 am)

Proverbs 11:3 The integrity of the upright shall guide them: but the perverseness of transgressors shall destroy them.

Please forgive us for the length of this particular devotion, but it was sent in from some friends of the ministry in Nigeria — please take the time to read this powerful message.

An aging king woke up one day to the realization that should he drop dead, there would be no male in the royal family to take his place. He was the last male in the royal family in a culture where only a male could succeed to the throne – and he was aging. He decided that if he could not give birth to a male, he would adopt a son who then could take his place but he insisted that such an adopted son must be extraordinary in every sense of the word. So he launched a competition in his kingdom, open to all boys, no matter what their background. Ten boys made it to the very top.

There was little to separate these boys in terms of intelligence and physical attributes and capabilities. The king said to them, 'I have one last test and whoever comes top will become my adopted son and heir to my throne.'

Then he said, 'This kingdom depends solely on agriculture. So the king must know how to cultivate plants. So here is a seed of corn for each of you.Take it home and plant and nurture it for three weeks. At the end of three weeks, we shall see who has done the best job of cultivating the seed. That person will be my heir-apparent.' The boys took their seeds and hurried home. They each got a flower pot and planted the seed as soon as they got home. There was much excitement in the kingdom as the people waited with bated breath to see who was destined to be their next king.

In one home, the boy and his parents were almost heartbroken when after days of intense care, the seed failed to sprout. He did not know what had gone wrong with his. He had selected the soil carefully, he had applied the right quantity and type of fertilizer, he had been very dutiful in watering it at the right intervals, he had even prayed over it day and night and yet his seed had turned out to be unproductive.

Some of his friends advised him to go and buy a seed from the market and plant that. 'After all,' they said, 'how can anyone tell one seed of corn from another?' But his parents who had always taught him the value of integrity reminded him that if the king wanted them to plant any corn, he would have asked them to go for their own seed. 'If you take anything different from what the king gave you that would be dishonesty.'

'Maybe we are not destined for the throne. If so, let it be, but don't be found to have deceived the king,' they told him. The d-day came and the boys returned to the palace each of them proudly exhibiting a very fine corn seedling. It was obvious that the other nine boys had had great success with their seeds. The king began making his way down the line of eager boys and asked each of them, 'Is this what came out of the seed I gave you?'

And each boy responded, 'Yes, your majesty.' And the king would nod and move down the line.

The king finally got to the last boy in the line-up. The boy was shaking with fear. He knew that the king was going to have him thrown into prison for wasting his seed. 'What did you do with the seed I gave you?' the king asked. 'I planted it and cared for it diligently, your majesty, but alas it failed to sprout.' the boy said tearfully as the crowd booed him.

But the king raised his hands and signaled for silence. Then he said, 'My people behold your next king.' The people were confused. 'Why that one?' many asked. 'How can he be the right choice?' The king took his place on his throne with the boy by his side and said, 'I gave these boys boiled seeds. This test was not for cultivating corn. It was the test of character; a test of integrity. It was the ultimate test.'

If a king must have one quality, it must be that he should be above dishonesty. Only this boy passed the test. A boiled seed cannot sprout.' Never!!

We live in a society that has become obsessed with success and many show success at any cost. We say the end justifies the means. It is the tragedy of life. You see, failure often is an invitation to God to show that he is all powerful and does not need help to make us great or to bless us.

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  • Teresa

    This is an excellent and timely message which God has greatly used in my life today, even though it is now November. Thank you for doing your part in the 'much work to do'.

  • joanmarie

    Thanks for this message it really made me refresh in my low moments this time of my life. I want to be a part doing much work to do. Please i need your prayers. I need more prayers so that what ever i desire God will grant it and that i can know God's plan and ways for me. for his glory.

    God bless!

  • Meghan

    Thank you so much for posting this. We have a training tonight for my business and I feel as though the Lord is telling me it needs to be on integrity. I think this is going to really open our eyes on how to have intergity not only in our life, but in our businesses as well. Thank you so much!

  • http://www.yahoo.com David Menon

    What a story which illustrates how much important integrity is and what blessing it can bring into our lives!

  • http://www.zonechretienne.com Charleson

    Hello! Thanks for posting this message. very powerful message, and very unpopular for our society, But praise be to God, the father of our Lord Jesus… Proverbs 11:3 The integrity of the upright shall guide them: but the perverseness of transgressors shall destroy them.

  • Stephen

    how very relevant ! success and reaching goals at all costs is what is preached from all directions no matter where we live or what kind of work we do these days . The temptation to 'bend' the rules or facts a little bit , cut corners , doing things we know are wrong but justify it by convincing ourselves ( often unsuccessfully ) that this is the order of the day. May the Lord give us the strength to plow on against the flow , and by doing so be a living gospel reflecting Christ in a way so much more powerful then words .

  • Cheryl Eaton

    Awesome! Thanks or sharing

  • Babbler

    Life is comprised of decisions that are based on pragmatism or of the spirit. Coming to a crossroad, the spiritual decision's rewards are not immediately recognized but in the long run more gratifying for one's character.

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