[Keep] a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.
—1 Peter 3:16
Fuller Theological Seminary's School of Intercultural Studies conducted a survey among 750 Muslims who had converted to Christianity. The survey showed that the strongest motivating factor behind conversion was seeing Christians practice what they preached.
The results of this survey and others like it are both an encouragement and a challenge. God gives us the privilege of seeing our lifestyle make a difference to others. Christian integrity means representing God well, speaking his truth and his love. If that seems hard to do, it is—on our own. Yet Christ, "the hope of glory," is in us to love others as Jesus would love them. Paul describes this as a mystery that is too glorious to understand (see Colossians 1:27).
Living with integrity is one of the most important things we can do to draw others to Jesus. That doesn't mean we live perfect lives. We will fail, and we'll need to ask forgiveness of God and others. But even in our failings, we can reflect an authenticity that leads others to a perfect God.
In the last week, when has your behavior not lived up to the values you profess?