I find it interesting that the word “accountability” when searched for in the Bible reveals a zero result. Though the specific word may not be there, the concept certainly appears and often where there is love being shared with others. For instance Paul writes in Ephesians 4:15, Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.
Speaking the truth in love is accountability and that is one of the ways that God loves us. God speaks to us in and through truth. In Jesus’ life, we discover that truth is a relationship and not merely a concept. However, when it comes to speaking the truth in love with family, coworkers, and other members of the Body of Christ, we often are challenged on how to articulate it. It takes courage to be vulnerable enough to allow others to speak truth into our lives even when it hurts. But God uses that gateway of permission for others to speak truth to us in love to build an atmosphere of trust that then makes them receptive to receiving our gift of accountability as well. Leaders like Lencioni, Hybels, and Maxwell have written hundreds of articles and books that make one thing clear: receiving and giving accountability in love is one of the greatest challenges in life. Yet it is that which brings relationships to a level that they could never reach otherwise.
My prayer is that God would lead us to be real with ourselves and open to allowing others to speak into our lives for the purpose of growing in our faith as a disciple of Christ. And that foundation would then become the relational bridge for others to receive our accountability despite how uncomfortable it might be at times. As we grow to maturity to Christ who is our head, may God be glorified in our life and love!