JOB—A MAN OF INTEGRITY
Job 1:1-12 There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil. And there were born unto him seven sons and three daughters. His substance also was seven thousand sheep, and three thousand camels, and five hundred yoke of oxen, and five hundred she asses, and a very great household; so that this man was the greatest of all the men of the east.
And his sons went and feasted in their houses, everyone his day; and sent and called for their three sisters to eat and to drink with them. And it was so, when the days of their feasting were gone about, that Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all: for Job said, It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts. Thus did Job continually.
Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them. And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it. And the Lord said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil? Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought? Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land. But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face. And the Lord said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the Lord.
James 5:11 Behold, we count them happy which endure. You have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.
Slide 2 Job’s integrity and confidence in God carried him through his deepest trials to victory.
The story of Job has always fascinated Bible readers. His sufferings and losses are often used as an example of human endurance under the most trying conditions. When people encounter tough times through the loss of loved ones and possessions, they often relate well to the story of Job. His eventual triumph and restoration provide hope to those who suffer. We greatly respect Job for his patience and endurance, which are the trademarks of his integrity. The early church revered him as one of the prophets, noting his exemplary patience as a worthy example for believers facing persecution and hardship (James 5:10-11). Job’s story has greatly impacted and strengthened society through its portrayal of a man who triumphed over his trials and temptations by remaining what he was—a man of integrity.
I. THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF JOB – evidenced
The Bible reveals that Job was perfect and upright. This certainly was not accidental, and it did not come naturally. He probably did not realize the far-reaching impact of his righteousness. It is important for us to choose to live righteously and godly because we do influence our world.
Job chose to have a relationship with God. No one forced or coerced him into serving the Lord; he wanted to. We should recognize that God wants much more than a one-time encounter. His desire is to share in our lives on a daily basis. The Bible declares that God places a high value on our relationship with Him. He has provided His love to mankind in hopes that we would respond with a reciprocating love for Him. For us, it is the peace of knowing we have a “friend in high places.” However, God also seeks us out. He loves us first and best. God knows who loves Him and who does not. Job loved God and God knew he did. In fact, Job’s good choices and lifestyle stood out from the rest of mankind and brought him special favor and attention from the Lord.
3 “The devil tempts that he may ruin; God tests that he may crown” (Saint Ambrose, circa 340-397).
Slide 1 contrasts the two forces that war within us: “God always tests us to bring out the best, while Satan tempts us to bring out the worst.”
God always tests us to bring out the best, while Satan tempts us to bring out the worst. God was so pleased with Job that He showed him off to Satan: “Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?” (Job 1:8).
Satan’s response was to sarcastically accuse God of protecting and favoring Job. Satan declared that Job’s righteousness was conditional, indicating that Job served God only because he was spoiled with wealth and good health. However, God had such confidence in Job as a man of integrity that He allowed Satan to test him. Satan immediately destroyed or took away all of Job’s great wealth—reducing him to poverty. He then went further by killing Job’s children. Poor Job had no idea that God was exhibiting him for all to observe. He was entirely in the dark regarding the contest into which God had entered him. However, God knew Job’s heart and trusted that he would persevere because of his strength and conviction.
Despite Job’s excellent response to his losses, satan pressed God to test him further. He wanted to take his health and break him in body. He really wanted to kill him, but God would not permit such evil. Instead, the Lord allowed satan to take away Job’s health to see if he would still retain his integrity. Satan then afflicted Job with boils from the top of his head to the soles of his feet. The only relief Job could find for his physical agony was to sit in an ash heap scratching at his sores with pieces of broken pottery. Although his wife lost her faith, Job never ceased to trust God.
5 “Then said his wife unto him, Dost thou still retain thine integrity? curse God, and die. But he said unto her, Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil? In all this did not Job sin with his lips” (Job 2:9-10).
The Bible declares that Job was “the greatest of all the men of the east” (Job 1:3). He had an excellent reputation among the people who knew him, and he drew others into his circle of friendship. Job had many friends besides the ones that came to comfort him, and they figured largely in his life after he had completed his trial.
Slide 6 quotes John Wooden: “Be more concerned with your character than with your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.”
Job was far more concerned about having the right kind of attitude than in developing a good reputation. Former University of California at Los Angeles basketball coach John Wooden expressed the importance of this attitude: “Be more concerned with your character than with your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.” Job’s reputation was renowned because of his sterling character; he was truly a man of honor and integrity.
“But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel” (I Timothy 5:8).
Unlike some modern men who abandon their wives and children in pursuit of their own concerns and pleasures, Job was a good husband and a model father. Job’s integrity became evident in the great concern he had for his family’s well-being. Although he provided them with an affluent lifestyle, he was also concerned about their spiritual welfare. He made sacrifices in their behalf in case they had sinned (Job 1:5). Job may have been a bit overindulgent in doing this because God holds each individual responsible for his own actions. Certainly, Job’s children should have made their own sacrifices, but Job’s love and concern for them motivated him to sacrifice just in case they had failed to do it.
Although Job sanctified his children continually, there is no clear explanation of what Job did to sanctify his children. (See Job 1:5.) He may have performed the ritual of laying his hands on them with a prayer to God for mercy and forgiveness. He may have anointed them with oil. He possibly talked with them about the things of God—teaching and instructing them in the ways of righteousness. To sanctify is “to set apart and make holy.” We do not know for certain how Job accomplished this, but he evidently sought to make his children holy and acceptable to the Lord.
Your children are watching you – what is your reaction when you do the wrong thing or say the wrong thing. You can’t expect your children to “do as I say, not as I do”.
Hold up those who are lost. Parents and spouses of unsaved loved ones should hold them up in prayer before the Lord until they are born again.
Runner’s World (8/91) told the story of Beth Anne DeCiantis’s attempt to qualify for the 1992 Olympic Trials Marathon. A female runner must complete the 26-mile, 385-yard race in less than two hours and forty-five minutes to compete at the Olympic Trials.
Beth started strong but began having trouble around mile twenty-three. She reached the final straightaway at two hours and forty-three minutes, with just two minutes left to qualify. Two hundred yards from the finish, she stumbled and fell. Dazed, she stayed down for twenty seconds. The crowd yelled, "Get up!" The clock was ticking—two hours and forty-four minutes—less than a minute to go.
Beth Anne staggered to her feet and began walking. Five yards short of the finish, with ten seconds to go, she fell again. She began to crawl, and with the crowd cheering her on, she crossed the finish line on her hands and knees. Her time? Two hours, forty-four minutes, fifty-seven seconds. She made it with just three seconds to spare!
The writer of the Book of Hebrews reminded us to run our race with perseverance and never give up (Hebrews 12:1). Utter despair may have filled Job’s heart, but he never gave up. He was steadfast. Rarely would we find a person who has never felt discouragement. Whether it happens to us or to someone that we are trying to cheer up, the answer centers around one word—perseverance.
Slide 8 shows a runner bursting through the tape at the finish line along with a quote from Matthew 10:22: “He that endureth to the end shall be saved.”
We should be steadfast and persevere. Jesus proclaimed, “He that endureth to the end shall be saved” (Matthew 10:22).
Job Was Not Controlled by Wealth
“And said, Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord. In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly” (Job 1:21-22).
Despite the loss of all his wealth, Job never became bitter or spiteful. He was rich in material things, but he valued spiritual things more highly. Job had his priorities in order—God first, people second, and things last. The loss of his children caused Job more grief than the loss of his possessions. He possessed his possessions while he had them—they did not possess him.
Slide 9 “If you want to know what a man is really like, take notice how he acts when he loses money” (Jewish proverb).
With his wealth taken and all his children dead, Job had only his wife and friends to turn to for understanding and encouragement. He found neither. As he sat on an ash heap in pain from the boils covering his body, his wife said to him, “Dost thou still retain thine integrity? curse God, and die” (Job 2:9). She questioned his character and honesty. What a terrible thing to have the one with whom you have been the most intimate to question your integrity!
However, Job was greater than his discouragement. He knew in his own heart that the calamities he had experienced were not due to sin in his life. He had been upright and righteous to the core. He was no hypocrite. Job responded to his wife’s comments: “Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil?” (Job 2:10).
While Job sat alone in his pain, three of his so-called friends—Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar—came to comfort him. They came as friends to console him in his time of sorrow, but they were overwhelmed when they saw his condition. They were speechless and just sat and gaped at him for a week before they could even find the courage to speak. Charles Buxton may have had Job’s friends in mind when he stated, “Silence is sometimes the severest criticism.”
Job’s friends had always known him to be healthy and wealthy. When they came upon him sitting in an ash heap, they were shocked and dismayed at his predicament and made the mistake of judging him by his circumstances. Their initial silence, and later their discouraging words and attitude, only added to Job’s misery. Instead of encouraging him and trying to make him feel better, they gave in to their own despair and added to Job’s misery by accusing him of secret sins. To Job’s credit he did his best not to let their criticisms destroy his own sense of personal integrity.
We can learn an important lesson from Job’s comforters: be careful not to judge others hastily. Things are not always what they seem at first. That is why people mistake education for intelligence, wealth for happiness, and lust for love. Life is not always fair because bad things do happen to good people. Like Job, many people experience injustices and tremendous sufferings that are not their fault. These poor souls may have to wait for eternity to find justification, for only in eternity will we find perfect justice. Until then, we should encourage the downtrodden rather than criticize them.
The word worship is a shortened form of the old English word worthship, which indicates God’s worthiness to receive praise and that we should show God how much we value Him. Job’s integrity was most clearly seen in his continued desire to worship the Lord despite his circumstances. He kept on trusting the Lord despite all that had happened. Some folks drop out of relationship with God the first time adversity hits them. They have shallow roots and are easily choked out of their spiritual growth. Job trusted God to see him through the best of times and the worst of times, and still he worshiped Him! (See Job 23:10-12.)
Throughout today’s lesson we have considered Job’s integrity. Despite appearances, Job was not guilty of the things that his friends accused him of doing. He was what he truly appeared to be—a good man. He remained righteous even when he was tempted to be otherwise. He could have succumbed to the temptations of self-pity, but he tried to examine his life to see if there were things that had led to his downfall.
REFUSED TO BLAME GOD
Job could have become bitter and resentful and blamed God for treating him unkindly, but instead he worshiped Him. When others attempted to explain his calamity as the result of secret sins, Job defended himself. He strongly stated his situation as not being a punishment for any wrongdoing on his part, but he also refused to blame God for his losses. He correctly recognized that just as his material blessings came from the Lord, so also did his loss of all things. While he did not understand why he was in such a pitiful state, he refused to blame or criticize God. He defended his losses as he did his blessings as just being part of the will of God for his life.
Many people become bitter and resentful when bad things happen in their lives. However, the Bible declares that it rains on the just and unjust alike, and time and chance happen to all. (See Matthew 5:45; Ecclesiastes 9:11.) It is important for all believers to understand that living for God does not mean a life of ease without trials. Being a Christian may sometimes appear to be a bed of roses, but one soon discovers some thorns along the way.
RELIED ON GOD
10 “The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished” (II Peter 2:9).
Job hung in there during the long time of his trial. He never gave up, nor did he lose confidence in the Lord. Job’s faith in God propelled him forward to the day when the Lord would redeem him and restore him to full physical health. (See Job 19:25-26.)
Job’s confidence in God gave him a source of encouragement in his worst moments. His faith in God was steadfast. Job declared that when he looked for God and could not find Him, he never lost his faith in Him. He always had confidence that God would deliver him (Job 23:8-10). Oswald Chambers wrote, “It is not our trust that keeps us, but the God in whom we trust who keeps us.” Job’s life displayed this kind of confidence, which was not in his ability to trust; it was in the One in whom he totally trusted—the Lord.
Whom do you trust? In whom do you place your total confidence?
“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths” (Proverbs 3:5-6).
A church member was having trouble with the concept of tithing. One day, he revealed his doubts to his pastor: “I just don’t see how I can give ten percent of my income to the church when I cannot even keep on top of our bills.”
The pastor replied, “John, if I promise to make up the difference in your bills when you fall short, do you think you could try tithing for just one month?”
After a moment’s pause, John responded, “Sure, if you promise to make up any shortage, I guess I could try tithing for one month.”
“Now, what do you think of that,” mused the pastor. “You say you would be willing to put your trust in a mere man like myself who possesses so little materially, but you could not trust your heavenly Father who owns the whole universe!”
The next Sunday, John gave his tithe, and has been doing so faithfully ever since.
At the end of Job’s trial, he repented of his pride and presumptuousness (Job 42:6, 10). Before he actually had a lengthy dialogue with God, Job had felt he knew and understood God’s ways. Because he had lived a righteous life, he felt he had spiritual understanding. However, he was mistaken. Worshiping the Lord and obeying His Word does not automatically guarantee spiritual insight or understanding. The prophet Isaiah proclaimed, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55:8-9).
Job repented when he finally saw the Lord in a way he had not even imagined before his trial. (See Job 42:5-6.) We should learn from Job’s lessons. We should never consider ourselves to have more knowledge or understanding of God and His ways than others. We should keep a humble spirit and admit that we are nothing and the Lord fills all creation with His glory.
The story of Job has one of the happiest endings imaginable. Out of the ash heap of sickness and despair Job arose to complete restoration. Job’s trial ended when he repented and prayed for his friends. His willingness to ask for forgiveness as well as grant it to others was the gateway to his own deliverance.
Repentance and mercy brought Job forgiveness and blessing. Job’s friends and relatives came to visit him, and they truly comforted him for his past trials. To show their love and concern, they each gave him a small portion of wealth. Just as Job’s past goodness and kindness were returned to him in a material form, we never know how the kindness we show toward others today may be rewarded in the future.
In Job’s case, he was given double what he had possessed before and a long life of one hundred forty years in which to enjoy it (Job 42:10, 16). This dispels the notion that it is wrong to be wealthy. It is possible that wealth could accumulate as a result of God’s blessing and approval, but wealth itself is emblematic neither of God’s approval and blessing nor of His disapproval.
The evil in money is not in having it; it is in loving it more than the Lord who blesses us and allows us to have it. To love money more than the Lord causes it to become the root of all evil (I Timothy 6:10). Job’s second blessing came from the Lord, who smiled upon him and allowed him to enjoy much in the way of material rewards.
Job was a man of integrity who served the Lord out of choice and not because he was forced to. He was steadfast in his confidence despite the horrible conditions inflicted upon him. Furthermore, he never lost his confidence in the Lord. At the end of his life, he was a better person because of the test he had endured. At one time or another, all of us are tested and tried. It is important that we hold on to the Lord during those times. It may be that the Lord has decided to show us off to the devil and prove what we are really made of!
In our nation—and in the church—there has been a falling away, a breakdown, and a compromise in integrity. Recent headlines have taught us that the boom of the 1990s was built on a foundation devoid of integrity. But compromise isn’t limited to CEOs who greedily sell out their employees or to pork-happy politicians. All too often we find a moral laxity behind our pews and, even worse, behind the pulpit.
Let me define what I mean by integrity. Webster’s tells us integrity means “an unimpaired condition.” It means to be sound. The Hebrew word for integrity, tom, also means to be complete or solid.
Integrity is completeness or soundness. You have integrity if you complete a job even when no one is looking. You have integrity if you keep your word even when no one checks up on you. You have integrity if you keep your promises. Integrity means the absence of duplicity and is the opposite of hypocrisy. If you are a person of integrity, you will do what you say. What you declare, you will do your best to be. Integrity also includes financial accountability, personal reliability, and private purity. A person with integrity does not manipulate others. He or she is not prone to arrogance or self-praise. Integrity even invites constructive and necessary criticism because it applauds accountability. It’s sound. It’s solid. It’s complete.
Integrity is rock-like. It won’t crack when it has to stand alone, and it won’t crumble though the pressure mounts. Integrity keeps one from fearing the white light of examination or resisting the exacting demands of close scrutiny. It’s honesty at all costs.
The words of Louis Adamic seem fitting, “There is a certain blend of courage, integrity, character and principle which has no satisfactory dictionary name but has been called different things at different times in different countries. Our American name for it is ‘guts.’
Integrity is having the guts to tell the truth, even if it may hurt to do so. Integrity is having the guts to be honest, even though cheating may bring about a better grade. Integrity is having the guts to quote sources rather than to plagiarize.
But there are some things integrity is not. It is not sinless perfection. A person with integrity does not live a life absolutely free of sin. No one does. But one with integrity quickly acknowledges his failures and doesn’t hide the wrong.
Integrity is essential in the church, in the marketplace, and especially in the home. When you walk in integrity, you leave it as a legacy for your children to follow (Proverbs 20:7). It’s what I call the father’s thumbprint. Blessed are you if you had a father with integrity and a mother with guts.
When you work with integrity, you honor the Lord. Regardless of your profession, your character and conduct are methods of ministry. Over 50 years ago, Elton Trueblood wrote,
It is hard to think of any job in which the moral element is lacking. The skill of the dentist is wholly irrelevant if he is unprincipled and irresponsible. There is little, in that case, to keep him from extracting teeth unnecessarily, because the patient is usually in a helpless situation. It is easy to see the harm that can be done by an unprincipled lawyer. Indeed, such a man is far more dangerous if he is skilled than if he is not skilled.
Do you put wire in walls? Do you repair cars? Do you work with numbers? Do you sell clothes? Perhaps you practice law or medicine. The important thing is not what work you do, but whether you do your work with integrity. Perhaps you labor behind the scenes, and your only thanks is the inner satisfaction of a job done right. Do you cheat on your exams? Are you cheating on your mate? Some have the audacity to do such things and call themselves Christians. No wonder the world is confused! Job is the original good person to whom bad things happen. The whole book of Job was written as a kind of set piece to explore, not only why the righteous suffer, but also to see if someone will maintain their righteousness for no reward. In other words, will Job be good for nothing?
One of the misnomers that have come out of this drama is “the patience of Job”. Job wasn’t patient at all. Listen to some of his complaints. “I loathe my life; I will give free utterance to my complaint; I will speak in the bitterness of my soul.” (10:1) “My spirit is broken, my days are extinct, the grave is ready for me.” (17:1) Do you think that any of those gripes sound like patience? Not at all.
The most notable thing that Job had was integrity. In this little drama God says to Satan, “Have you not considered my servant Job? There is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man who fears God and turns away from evil. He still persists in his integrity.” Even in the suffering in his body Job persisted. He also suffered the torment of his soul and of his mind. Yet, he was able to keep body, mind and soul together. That is integrity. When you have integrity, you are fully integrated. All your parts agree. You cannot be false to yourself or your principles or beliefs.
The reason the book of Job was written was to show us that all suffering is not deserved. The righteous do suffer. Shari R. Barr, “Expecting life to treat you well because are a good person is like expecting an angry bull not to charge because you are a vegetarian.”
In his suffering Job had to face his friends who kept pressing him to come clean with him. They were certain that he was paying for something he did, for that was the prevailing psychology of the day. I might add that it is also prevalent in our time, as well. I’ve heard over and over the lament, “What did I do to deserve this?” when faced with some trial or calamity. The truth is that things happen without the trigger of some sin we’ve committed. That notion is so ingrained in us that Harold Kushner had to write the book When Bad Things Happen to Good People. I suppose that you had a study on that book here in the church years ago, as so many churches did, so I would expect you all to know, as Jesus put it so well, that “rain falls on the just and the unjust.” So, when you look around and see that someone is having a tough time, don’t assume that they have sinned to bring that on themselves and apply that to yourself as well.
There is an opposite truth here, too. That is that we should never assume that we deserve our blessings. I have been richly blessed in my life, but that has not happened because I am worthy of those blessings, and that could be wiped out with an automobile accident at any time, or I could have some life threatening illness which can happen at my age, or at any age. Job put it most clearly when his wife approached him and said, “Do you still persist in your integrity? Curse God, and die.” I’m glad I’m not married to her. Job’s response was, “You speak as any foolish woman would speak.” I didn’t say that Job was not a sexist. He went on to say, “Shall we receive the good at the hand of God, and not receive the bad?” That is a balanced approach to the vicissitudes of life. Job had integrity.
When something happens to you, I want you to do an integrity check. Don’t do as so many people do today, look for someone to blame, including yourself. I’m afraid that we’ve become a society of victims looking around for someone who is responsible for our troubles, whether that is God or our neighbor. We don’t need to find someone who is responsible for our troubles. We have them and we must deal with them.
There are two rules for doing what we need to do. The first is, expect God to help you with whatever is going on in your life. Learn to pour out your heart in prayer, in your own words, what it is that you are feeling in the depths of your being. That often helps to clarify what you need. Then ask God for what you think you need. We often expect too little from God. God knows what we feel. God cries when we cry and laughs when we laugh. That is what Jesus coming in the flesh was all about. It was to show us that suffering is not alien to God.
Step One: Draw a Line
During a football game, have you ever noticed which part of the field is most damaged? It's usually the middle because the closer a player gets to the sideline, the more likely he is to run out of bounds. Like the opposing football team, Satan is trying to get us to step out of bounds. As we near the sideline, the closer he is to influencing our lives. As parents, we need to teach teenagers how to keep from stepping out of play. The key is teaching them to create a new sideline, ten yards away from the original line. In other words, they need to leave room for error. Since everyone makes mistakes, having room before you step out can be the difference between losing a few yards and losing the game.
Step Two: Becoming Aware of Your Choices
[This was paraphrased from What Really Matters at Home by John & Susan Yates. (1992) Dallas: Word Publishing.] In addition to the evil one's influence, another damaging force working against integrity is rationalization. Today's test for honesty seems to be, "It's okay as long as you don't get caught," or "It's not that bad, every one's doing it." As parents, we need to teach our children to stop asking what's wrong with certain a choice. Instead, we need to teach them to ask what's right with it. If we can help teenagers to consider whether their actions are moving them closer to or further away from integrity, then a major battle has been won.
"Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much" (Luke 16:10). As a teenager I did not understand the importance of this verse. Since then, it has taken much pain and humiliation in realizing that how I handle the small things dictates how I react to the bigger ones. I now understand that all the little "white" lies I told, set the tone for my life. Therefore, since I did not guard the truth, I kept myself from developing integrity. I now start each day out by thinking about the choices I'll make and how they can dictate my life. For me, "to thine own self be true," simply means understanding what God wants for my life and being true to His wishes.
Step Three: Be Accountable
The key to maintaining integrity is through accountability. Accountability is simply being responsible to another person or persons for the commitments you've made. If you desire integrity, ask an older friend, youth minister, teacher, or coach for accountability. The important ingredient is having someone to ask the difficult questions. For example, "Did you compromise your standards on your date last night?" or "Have you lied or cheated this week?" Ideally, these questions force us to carefully and prayerfully consider our choices because we know that someone will be checking.
As parents, begin praying for the right person who can provide accountability for your teen. Furthermore, encourage your teenager to draw a line and then to stay ten yards behind it. Help him to see how his choices will dictate the life he wants to lead. Integrity will develop into the hearts of those who understand why guarding the little things can lead towards what George Washington most wanted—the character of an honest man!