I set several goals for myself last week. No one else knew anything about them. I didn’t tell a soul.
I didn’t achieve a single one of those goals either.
Most anything we attempt without accountability will rarely be achieved. Do you find that to be true?
My bet is you’ve attempted to develop new habits, accomplish certain tasks or attain goals without telling anyone as well, even if your goal was as simple as “I’ll floss every night this week” or as spiritual as “Every day I’ll have my quiet time with the Lord before I check my email.”
We have a much better chance of pushing ourselves past the hurdles to reach our goals when someone else is at least aware of our attempt. Accountability, while somewhat daunting and exposing, is a necessary component in our spiritual growth.
How do you go about enlisting someone to keep you accountable in your spiritual life? Well, you don’t necessarily need to have just one accountability partner, although that is certainly one way to handle the situation. But I kind of like the idea of simply “living out in the open.” By that I mean that you make yourself accountable to different people in every situation. For instance, you might
- join a Bible study group and ask the gals at your table to check on you if you don’t show up. Check up on them, too, if they miss class.
- enlist a good friend to ask you once a week if you’ve been having your quiet times.
- get to know the people who sit around you at church so they’ll notice when you’re missing.
- enlist another friend to ask about the scriptures you’re memorizing and meditating on. Partner up!
- confide in a counselor, mentor or mature Christian about a temptation you’re trying to shake. Allow them to ask you the tough questions once a month…and be honest with your answers.
- join a support group for a particular issue you’re trying to grow through, such as grief, addictions, or parenting. Be honest and transparent in the group.
- ask an older couple to mentor you and your spouse, spending time with them and allowing them to lovingly “scrutinize” your marriage and speak into your lives.