There is a word that has become distasteful to many people. It is a word that represents a lot of pain and misuse which may cause the heart to sink when someone mentions it. This is understandable, yet sad because it is a word that can help us and provide a means of grace for growth in our personal lives as well as our marriage.
What word am I talking about?
Accountability. Merriam Webster defines it this way: an obligation or willingness to accept responsibility or to account for one’s actions.
This is actually a good practice–to be willing to accept responsibility for our own actions. This is how Tom and I have experienced the most growth in our marriage–either through being accountable to each other or to others.
When accountability goes awry is when others try to hold you accountable for things you haven’t submitted to them for help. Or when they bring up an area where you aren’t willing to change.
We have an enemy who wants nothing more than to disrupt God’s plan for our growth and maturity. He is lying in wait hoping to ambush us in whatever way he can. And the sad thing is? His methods often work. That’s why he keeps on doing it.
I’m here to remind you that accountability is a good thing. Find someone whom you respect and trust. Open your lives and marriage struggles up to them. And don’t wait for them to discover your weaknesses and temptations–tell them. Confess the games you like to play. Be serious about changing. Allow the Holy Spirit to convict and with that conviction–repent. Repentance is changed behavior and is only possible by a willingness to submit your ways to God’s ways.
If we really believe that God is who He says He is, then we have to be willing to trust Him with the areas we think we must keep hidden. Hiding hurts no one but us and those we say we love the most.
If I were to ask you, who are you accountable to? Would you have an answer? If you don’t, then I pray you’ll find the courage to seek it out. This is a tool that God can use to help you grow and change the fastest.
“…submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.” – Ephesians 5:21