James 5:9-12 The Voice
Integrity is a big deal with God and we see an excellent example in our reading today from the Apostle James. The example is simple and practical, yet so many people struggle with honoring this discipline of truth. When we say “yes” and agree to a commitment, then do we stay the course or do we look for reasons to bail at the last minute? You know the scenario; your heart was not in it from the beginning, but you agreed to do it, anyway. Your commitment was heard by God, so don’t be surprised if the Lord watches and weighs your integrity as a test. Integrity is built on truth and your word means a great deal as a son or daughter of God who is Truth. Some times things come up last minute—emergencies—but God knows whether we actually have an emergency or we are just making excuses to get out of the commitment we should have never made in the first place.
9 Brothers and sisters, don’t waste your breath complaining about one another. If you judge others, you will be judged yourself. Be very careful! You will face the one true Judge who is right outside the door. 10 The prophets who declared the word of the Lord are your role models, my brothers and sisters, for what it means to live patiently in the face of suffering. 11 Look, we bless and honor the memory of those who persevered under hardship. Remember how Job endured and how the Lord orchestrated the triumph of his final circumstances as a grand display of His mercy and compassion.
12 It is even more important, my brothers and sisters, that you remember not to make a vow by the heavens or the earth or by anything. When you say “yes,” it should always mean “yes,” and “no” should always mean “no.” If you can keep your word, you will avoid judgment.
Prayer: Lord, thank you for helping me see integrity in practical ways. Help me to carefully choose and make my commitments, as well as keep them as a way to honor you. In Jesus’ name. Amen.