Monday, July 9, 2007

Traffic Laws and Integrity

It's been a little difficult to think of something to write about church yesterday. Not because it was particularly boring or un-spiritual but because I was pretty darn sick. I don't remember much except having to introduce myself a million times (as it was our first time in this ward) and trying desperately to not cough all over everyone I met.

But through the daze I do recall the topic of Relief Society: Integrity. There is so much to be said about integrity. And I'm sure they did say alot but it seemed like there was a disproportional amount of time and energy spent on the importance of obeying traffic laws for the sake of our integrity. It was as if that was the teacher's main point on integrity. One woman even went so far as to say that if we go even 1 mile over the speed limit the spirit completely withdraws from us but if we stay within the speed limit bad things will never happen to us while we are driving. (No exaggeration, she really said that and more!) While I have no intention of arguing about the importance of obeying traffic laws, I just kept thinking, is this really the best we can come up with on the subject of integrity?

So as I was thinking about the lesson a little deeper (especially now that my cold meds have kicked in) I think my own take-away from that lesson-after pushing past the importance of obeying traffic laws-was that ultimately our integrity is about our intentions and is between us and the Lord...Along the lines of the old saying "integrity is what you do when no one is looking." I think it especially has to do with two main aspects of our lives: the intent of our hearts and our efforts. And that is where this lesson really hits home for me.

I am definitely not saying that our integrity is not dependent on our dealings with those around us, because of course it is. What I am saying is that if we make sure that we are square with the Lord, first and foremost, we can count ourselves as full of integrity. It's less about making sure that I am going exactly 25 mph in a residential area and more about making sure that my heart is honest in all my dealings. Because I believe that our actions are a direct result of our thoughts and feelings. I guess my point is, if my heart and efforts are in the right place and still my actions fall short (hey, I'm only human) I feel like I can still count myself as one having integrity.

All in all, as I mull all this around in my groggy little brain, I am left with greater resolve and inspiration to keep my intentions pure and act with more integrity in all aspects of my life. And therefore I count yesterday's Relief Society lesson as a success.

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