accountability

From the heart of ministry:

…a place where people have an opportunity to be real, to grow in grace together, to discover their gifts and talents and use them to care for one another

One of the dangers of conventional church ministry is that in the minds of many singing some songs, listening to a sermon and attending a small group is the majority of church. While there is some value in doing all these things they don’t get you to the point where you can feel real love and encounter life changing ministry. It is almost impossible to be honest about the deepest issues in your life in a large group. A small group is better but people still find it difficult to open up in sensitive areas of their life…

Not fully related to the rest, but it really resonated with me… so there.

I just wanted to jot out a few notes I am dwelling on tonight from the recent Wild Men on Fire Weekend, specifically the workshop we attended for Accountability.

What and Why

  • it’s not mentoring or fellowship
  • its a “relationship” thing (not a “religion” thing)
  • def: opening one’s life to a few carefully selected, trusted, loyal confidants who speak the truth – who have the right to examine, question, appraise and to give counsel.
  • a man who isolates himself seeks his own desire; he rages against all wise judgment
  • Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ
  • And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works
  • Flee the evil desires of youth, and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart
  • Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!

How

  • Decide key areas for accountability together and write them down – give copy to each
  • set regular time & place and be consistent – every week (or every other as minimum)
  • establish a written covenant!
  • pray for each other!
  • be transparent!
  • stay the course!

Looking further around online about this topic, I came across some common barriers:

  • fear – not wanting to share
  • shame – of the multitude of sins
  • lack of progress – no visible growth and wanting to give up
  • lack of safety – no trust
  • lack of spiritual discipline
  • erratic meeting times

I’m kind of low on go for the night and still need to paint a pumpkin, but there was a bunch of worthwhile stuff here as well…

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3 responses to “accountability

  1. I think you may catch & relay to others, many useful aspects of this whole accountability effort over time that most of us might miss. – td

  2. I was reading the “How” list and the list following and thought, “Wow – I have friends with whom I do all that.” It’s just that (a) they’re mostly not Christians (some are “spiritual”, some aren’t believers in anything at all), and (b) they’re all not in Jefferson City, but hundreds and thousands of miles away.

    As to accountability on a local scale – hmmm, “We’re sorry, all circuits are busy.” Meaning, I just haven’t met anyone locally I would trust.

    Good subject – keep writing!

  3. Hopefully so Tim.

    Jim – understand what you mean but do wonder about some of the Hows when they are differences in beliefs – especially “spirituality”. I assume there is some baseline assumptions between the people involved.

    Total God thing on meeting these guys – one local guy from my initial post about it, one guy from a bible study, one from my church.

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