Faith

Accountability: The Burden Of Truth

“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” -Proverbs 27:17

Our “War Room Life” Group study is on week two of five lessons. Lesson One delved into living a lukewarm life. No one likes their water, tea, juice or coffee lukewarm. Especially God. This week, we move from pleasing God with our lifestyle to studying on the importance of accountability.

Confronted with a message that says we must be vigilant to be accountable one to another; many begin to squirm at the thought. Who among us wants the spiritual flashlight shined in the dark recesses of our heart? Who among us enjoys a rousing conversation about what we should or should not be doing, or how we should or should not be living?

Even I, a self-proclaimed “keep it real or go home” believer, do not exactly relish having to speak “challenging truths” to my friends in the faith. Never mind trying to be on the receiving end! Glad to know that the Word of God isn’t filled with suggestions though. It’s all for the benefit of the Body of Christ.

It breeds growth.  Stagnancy will be foreign to the person who is open to hearing what needs to be said about them and for them. The wounds of a friend will serve a greater purpose than the kisses of an enemy (Proverbs 27:6). It can be as simple as veering your girlfriend away from buying that one more purse she doesn’t need to encouraging someone to live out their dreams or moving on from a hurtful relationship.  The first keeps money in her bank account. The second brings about personal success. The third heals a heart. All a means to a fruitful end.

It yields spiritual maturity. At day’s end, when you speak in hushed, gentle, yet firm tones with your brother or sister, feelings and emotions have to be the last thing considered. Rather it is the condition of your soul that will matter when we meet our Savior. You can’t be worried about offending when their soul is in peril. You can’t be worried about losing a friendship if it will mean them seeing Jesus one day. It is the toughest pill to swallow. The one that goes against the grain. Yet is is the necessary thing to do.

It makes for a better you. Holding each other accountable brings about healthy and transparent relationships. The days of “yes men” relationships are over. If I can’t speak to you in honesty and truth and expect the same in return, then this relationship has met its demise. Only when we surround ourself with like-minded souls are we truly able to see progress in our walk with Christ.

“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone. Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” -Ecclesiastes 4:9-12

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Faith, Grief And Loss, Random Thoughts, Uncategorized

Not All For Naught

Not sure what prompted a mentor of mine to tell me this particular story. Maybe she saw that I was going a hundred miles a minute with no brakes. Or that I had bitten off more at a time that I could possibly chew. Whatever it was, I remember her recounting the story of a head janitor that fell dead in the school office and the principal bending over, unhooking the master keys and passing it on to the next janitor. 

I’m sure there was some wailing and carrying at that moment. I’m pretty sure blood pressures were sky high and tears flowed down like the River Nile. I’m even sure that the memorial service for this head janitor was packed to the gills. I’m sure his loved ones miss that dear man deeply and that life without him is unbearable. 

I am also sure that life still went on. 

We rise from bed, we drink our coffee and we start each day. Some of us pray. Some of us don’t. Our days are filled with agendas, meetings, conference calls, classes, all sorts of activities that keep us busy busy busy. 

When a life is cut short be it at twenty or ninety we seldom pause to take stock of our respective lives and ask God:

Am I where I need to be? Am I doing what I should be doing? What am I driven by? Why do I even bother? 

Experiencing loss is the worse and the best thing that can take place. Worse in that the devastation that grips you and won’t release its hold can lay you real low. But best in that while you are out for the count, God does His best work in you. Paradigms shift. Transformation takes place. Dead skin is shed. And you walk away changed. 

I guess my mentor was trying to drive home the point that all this right here wasn’t worth a damn at the end of the day. That the Ecclesiastical outlook on life is the real truth. You are born. You live. You die. What’s done in between makes a world of a difference. Your eternity’s destination is the final call. 

Because when they reach over your body and hand the keys to someone else, it cannot be all for naught.