July 25, 2004

Henry Neufeld - “Integrity as a Spiritual Discipline”

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Henry Neufeld spoke on "Integrity as a spiritual discipline". We sometimes think of spiritual disciplines as being only the very private activities such as fasting, praying, meditating and reading. Henry proposed that integrity, although never really listed as a spiritual discipline, is so integral to the Christian life that it should perhaps be considered a spiritual discipline. Job, an ideal in many ways, was judged by God to be "blameless and upright", and Ps. 31 asks that we be "judged according to our righteousness and integrity", but otherwise, integrity seems to be assumed rather than stressed in scripture. If we have integrity, we consistently live according to a code of morality, keeping our word and promises, and are faithful to our relationships. Although this seems both obvious and simple enough, too many people act otherwise, sometimes without realizing their lack of integrity. Some publicly claim to honour the sanctity of life (possibly by abhorring abortions) but then work to support the death penalty and war. Nobody even expects political candidates to keep all of their promises. Students plagiarize freely, and the media continually tell stories of behaviour which lacks integrity by people in business, government, church, family and the various professions. While we profess to be believers, "our actions speak louder than our words." In Matthew, Jesus advised us to tell the truth and to hunger for righteousness (living correctly), and James argued that faith without action is dead. Henry therefore concluded with the prayer, "God, grant us grace to live with intentional integrity," suggesting that this type of living should not be accidental or sporadic, but purposeful. [JEK]


Passage: Psalm 139
Communion: No
Ecumenical or Event:
Potluck Lunch: No
Congregational Meeting: No


Speaker: Henry Neufeld
Worship Leader: Karl Brown
Song Leader: Rosie Perera
Pianist: J Evan Kreider
Usher: Erna Friesen
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