Our theme for this month: “Character and integrity”
Our Bible verse for today: “Joseph is a fruitful vine, a fruitful vine beside a spring; its branches climb over the wall.” Genesis 49:22 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “Your life of character and integrity will be a blessing others.”
I’m a child of the 50s and 60s and one of my favorite television shows as a child was “The Munsters”. The Munster family consisted of the father, Herman, who was a friendly and goofy Frankenstein character; the mother Lily, who was a sultry vampire; the grandfather Al, who was an over-the-hill vampire who loved to reminisce about the good old days; the son Eddie who was a werewolf; and then there was the poor daughter Marilyn, who was just a normal girl and therefore the rest of the family secretly felt sorry for her because she was so odd. They lived in a big old Victorian home at 1313 Mockingbird Lane, and Herman made his living as a grave digger.
Herman Munster was a bit of a philosopher and he saw himself as a wise and kind all-American Dad. One day he sat his son Eddie on his lap and gave him some very good advice about character and integrity. It went like this:
“The lesson I want you to learn is … it doesn’t matter what you look like, you can be tall, short or fat or thin or ugly or handsome like your Father, or you can be black or yellow or white, it doesn’t matter. What does matter is the size of your heart and the strength of your character.”
Wise words. Biblical, in fact. This is a principle taught over and over again, in numerous ways and by numerous teachers, all throughout the Bible. The thing that matters most in the life of a man or woman of God is the size of your heart and the strength of your character. This is the outward evidence which reveals the depth of your faith. If your faith is real and deep and strong, it will be obvious in how you conduct yourself in the world. You will be a man or woman of strong character and impeccable integrity – and people will know that to be true about you.
In Genesis 49:22 we find Jacob at the end of his life, on his deathbed, speaking words of insight and blessing about his sons. In each case the words spoken revealed something deep and integral about the man’s character. When he came to Joseph, Jacob likened him to a fruitful vine that has been well-nourished and whose fruit is abundant – so much so that his branches spread far and his fruit blessed many. What a great picture of a life lived well!
Christian men and women with strong character and impeccable integrity are a blessing to everyone they encounter. Their lives matter in meaningful ways. You may not be good looking, wealthy, talented, or of high professional accomplishments, but if you are a man or woman of character and integrity, you are leading a fruitful life that is a blessing to others.