Authentic doers

May 14, 2019

Michael Jordan was the greatest professional basketball player during the late 1980s and 1990s. However, he was never the highest paid player.

When asked why he never held out on his contract to his team to pay him more money Jordan replied, “I have always honored my word. I went for security. I had six year contracts, and I always honored them. People said I was underpaid, but when I signed on the dotted line, I gave my word.” Later a reporter asked Jordan would he stand on his previous decision. Michael quickly stated, “What if my kids saw their dad breaking a promise? How could I continue training them to keep their word?” He went on to say, “You stand by your word, even when that might go against you.”

Whenever I hear stories like this, I cannot help but connect them to people of the Bible. In Philippians 1:9-10 Paul challenges the church with the importance of personal and relational integrity. He prayed, “And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ” (NIV).

When pure (inward) and blameless (outward) are combined, the Lord is instructing all believers to live with inward integrity before the Lord and external integrity before man.
Without a doubt, the church can be the one place that teaches about living a pure and blameless life. Church leaders have the opportunity to hold their members accountable to these standards so they can grow in spiritual maturity.

Paul addresses this subject in Ephesians 4:11-13 when he writes, “So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ” (NIV). The Bible is clear that the church is only part of the maturing process.

Moses, on the other hand, says in Deuteronomy 6:7, “Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up” (NIV). There is no greater place to model how to live a pure and blameless life than with your family. This is a critical truth for parents.

But based on the current cultural landscape, there is cause to believe many moms and dads do not understand the importance of “impressing” God’s commands on the lives of their children. One of the main causes for our cultural demise is the lack of integrity in the home. Discipleship with every child begins at home. In the end, parents are ultimately responsible for preparing them for eternity.

Needless to say, this is a serious matter. Scott McConnell, director of LifeWay Research, observed, “Students are experts at noticing inconsistencies between what parents say and do.” It is easy for parents to talk the talk, but the real issue comes down to whether they can walk the walk.

Nothing undermines parents’ efforts in training their children more than when their actions and God’s Word do not match up. Our homes need moms and dads living authentic lives now more than ever. We will never be perfect, but it should be our heart’s desire to live with godly integrity.


by Mark Smith  /  
Family Evangelism and Discipleship  /  Baptist State Convention of North Carolina

6 ways to be a generous leader during the holidays

The holiday season is upon us. It is a time rooted in generosity, from God providing a bountiful harvest for the Pilgrims and Native Americans to God gifting us with His one and only Son. We celebrate because of the great gifts God has bestowed on us. Of course, the holiday season...

Will you pray and go?

I don’t remember much about that day, but one thing I do remember: it was hot — really hot. The temperature in Newton was near 100 degrees Fahrenheit that day. But we had committed to walk our neighborhood and pray for divine appointments. This was the third time in three weeks we...

A Christmas resource with families in mind

Why did Jesus need to come to Earth? This is just one of the thought-provoking questions included in the Advent family devotional surrounding the coming of Christ to the world. “Advent” means coming or arrival, and Family Advent Devotions, developed by the Faith at Home ministry...

California man comes cross country to plant multiethnic church in NC

Is God behind the North Carolina Baptist effort to plant new churches across the state? Gary Lee says yes. He says God called him from California to plant a new church in Raleigh. In fact, Lee is one of many church planters who have been called from other states and nations to...

The Lottie Moon Christmas Offering exemplifies our work

The Lottie Moon Christmas Offering (LMCO) has supported missionaries to the unreached since 1888. Currently, Southern Baptists can celebrate having 3,640 missionaries serve and share the hope of Christ in the least-reached places across the world with the International Mission...

Hollifield exhorts NC Baptists to prioritize God, gospel & disciple-making

In his final address to messengers as executive director-treasurer of the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina (BSCNC), Milton A. Hollifield Jr. challenged N.C. Baptists to devote themselves to the Lord and continue working together to fulfill the Great Commission....

4 keys to creating a spiritually vibrant home

The most-asked question I hear from parents is, “How do we raise kids who will love Jesus in adulthood?” One mom in our church phrased it like this, “What is the secret sauce for raising kids who love Jesus?” In our culture today, these are valid questions, and God left the...

Baptist Children’s Homes offer eternal hope to hurting families

One of the ministries in our state that tugs at my heartstrings is the Baptist Children’s Homes (BCH) of North Carolina. I’m thankful for the long and rich partnership between Baptist Children’s Homes and the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina. North Carolina Baptists have...

]

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Select Language ^

Share This

Share this with your friends!