Throughout life we all have dreams of how we would like to be remembered. When I was a child my dream was to be remembered as a great athlete, and then I wanted to be known as a successful farmer. As I grew older my dreams changed and I wanted to be known as a good husband, good neighbor, good friend, good church member, a good pastor and preacher. Yet when my life comes to an end, how will I be remembered and how will you be remembered?
We read in Proverbs 11: 1. A false balance is abomination to the LORD: but a just weight is his delight. 2. When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom. 3. The integrity of the upright shall guide them: but the perverseness of transgressors shall destroy them. 4. Riches profit not in the day of wrath: but righteousness delivereth from death. 5. The righteousness of the perfect shall direct his way: but the wicked shall fall by his own wickedness.
In this text we can see four characteristics Solomon wrote about how we are to live as we walk on this earth.
We see in verse one a person must be honest. The world seems to say anything goes, do whatever is necessary to gain the things of the world, even if it means cheating, lying or being dishonest. It only takes one dishonest deal to taint one’s reputation and witness for the Lord. The Lord is delighted when we practice honesty in our dealings daily.
We see in verse two a person must be humble. The world today seems to teach that we must be filled with pride and take credit for everything good that happens to us. The Bible tells us a little further in Proverbs that pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall. (Proverbs 16:18) When we are blessed to be able to accomplish anything it is because the Lord has allowed us the ability, strength, courage and wisdom to do so. We need to give Him the honor, praise and glory for everything.
We see in verse three a person must live with integrity. It would be easy to say that honesty and integrity are the same things, yet there are some differences. Honesty is what we do while others are watching. Integrity is what we do when no one is watching. The world often tells us that no one will know but we must keep in mind that God always knows what we do or don’t do. The Lord expects His people to do what is right, therefore we are people of integrity.
We see in verses four and five a person must live with righteousness. In this text righteousness means that we are to live to show the world that we have a relationship with the Lord. We often use words that say that we are in a personal relationship with the Lord and yet our actions speak so loudly it seems that we do not even know the Lord. We need to walk through this life daily so that others can see that we know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. This relationship can be seen because of our faithful walk with the Lord.
In Genesis 5 we read of a man named Enoch. There is not much mentioned in scripture about this man except that he was remembered as a man who walked with God. When we live so that these characteristics are evident in our life then when our walk on earth is finished, we can be remembered as one who walked with the Lord.
Rev. Tim Burton is minister of Flippin Memorial Baptist Church.