Being Accountable for the brethren
One afternoon, my friends and I were doing what we do best: talking about the kingdom of God and our walk. Moments passed by, when suddenly my brother in Christ said something that has been ongoing among the brethren. He stated that he was tired of sisters coming to him for advice and talking to him for the simple fact that he was a brother. He pointed out that that’ what sisters in Christ were for; for sisters in Christ to confide in. He began to scold us for not being there for our sister in Christ. I kept quiet, while my sister rebuked what he said. She began to ramble about how some sisters don’t like taking corrections and refuse to listen so they go to men instead.
Oh, Father God, the irony!
Is that really the problem? Are sisters in Christ really unapproachable? Or is it that sisters don’t like correction? Or could it be that sisters are nowhere to be found? Whatever the causes, the effects are able to corrupt and divide a fellowship.
Accountability is defined as "the quality or willingness to accept responsibility; to account for one's action". Basically, "being responsible for someone’s action."
Throughout the bible, God has shown his desire for his people to have someone there with them to be accountable for their actions and whereabouts. God desires accountability in every dimension possible. When God created Eve, He didn't just create a wife. He created a helper, an accountability partner. Eve was there to make sure that Adam accomplished everything God created Adam to do. She was designed to make sure He did all that he was asked to do.
We see how that turned out. Awkward. Fast forward to Cain and Abel
Genesis 4:9 NIV
Then the Lord said to Cain, “Where is your brother Abel?” “I don’t know,” he replied. “Am I my brother’s keeper?”
God already knew where Abel was. He was God. He asked Cain that because Cain was Abel's accountability partner since birth. He should know the wellbeing and welfare of his brother constantly.
As we can see accountability comes from different relationships. If God should ask at any moment where your accountability partner is, you should be ready with an answer. We all need to be accountability for one another.
What should we be accountable for?
We need to be accountable for each other salvation, walk, relationship, health, welfare and etc.
I am not really fond of the term “accountability partner”. I never asked anyone, orally, to be my accountability partner. My sisters and I have an unspoken understanding that if anyone needs to corrected or to be checked, we speak up about the matter. I recently asked my best friend if she was my accountability partner. She didn’t have an idea if she was. It was very awkward. I wish I could forget it. If you think about it, those who are constantly encouraging you and sharpening you spirit, qualify to be your accountability partner(s).
I remember one day after bible study, our older brothers in Christ (I should say Uncle, because these guys are old) were telling us about how they used to take turns asking each other questions at the end of their busy days. I didn’t think anything of it, until I heard the questions. They took turns asking questions like “Did you have sex today?” “Did you masturbate today?” and “Did you curse today?” Can you imagine someone you are close to asking you very personal questions every day? I bet you will think twice before sinning.
Who should be my accountability partner?
1. Someone you can trust to not run their mouths about what is said in confidentiality
2. Someone who will speak up about a matter that they feel needs to be addressed
3. Someone who you are comfortable with
4. Someone close to you in age
5. Someone who you feel is spiritually mature as you
6. Someone your gender
This brings me back to my issue earlier. Sisters should be accountable for sisters. Brothers should be accountable for brothers. Yeah, we are one big family in Christ, but there still needs to be separation. A sister confiding in a brother, vice versa, allows the two to create an emotional connection that does not need to be created. A brother can’t give adequate advice to a sister. What does a brother know about being a female in Christ? What does a sister know about being a brother in Christ? Although, we may have similar obstacles, the way we deal with them differs.
The main point of being accountable is to ensure that we don't fall or become stagnate during our walk. If you don't have anyone to be accountable for you, you are isolated from the fellowship. An isolated Christian is vulnerable and is open to attacks from the enemy. Why? Because if you sin, become stagnate or lose your fire, who’s gonna check you!? Not yourself, I tell you that. Who can lie to you, better than yourself? You need someone who is logical and will be rational with you. The enemy will have a field day with you. That’s what they want, you to keep your sin a secret. They work best in the dark, where light can’t expose them.
Proverbs 28:13 NIV
Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy.
Jame 5:16 NIV
Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.
In order for this accountability partnership to work, you have to a teachable heart. You have to be open to being rebuked, scolded, and corrected. If not, I feel bad for you. You will have a hard time changing and will not grow further is Christ.
Galatians 6:1-2 NIV
Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted. 2 Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ
On the other hand, we are all accountable for one another. If you detect another brethren being complacent, don’t wait for them to approach you for help. They are gonna deny it to themselves. Speak up! It’s best to intercede when a brethren stumbles or trip as opposed to react when they hit the floor. Its best to prevent a sin before it escalates or keep a fire burning before it is extinguished. It’s best to stop a sister or brother from lusting, than for them to get help after they fornicate. It’s best to stop a sister or brother from fornicating, than to help them end a soul tie. It is easier to nip something in the bud from the start, than to allow it to grow and try to uproot the situation.
To be accountable, you have to be bold. To speak to someone you are so close to about an issue, it’s not easy. If you are bold, you wouldn’t avoid the issue and will consistently check on your sister/brother. You also can’t compromise. If you know what it right, rebuke your sister/brother. Don’t try and sugar coat the truth to satisfy your sister/brother. Nor be afraid to offend them because at the end of the day, their blood is in your hands.
To be accountable, you must be mature and wise. It’s pointless for a sister/brother to help another sister/brother deal with their struggle with sin in their walk, if they too are struggling. It’s the blind leading the blind. Lawd have mercy.
To be accountable, you must also be gentle and compassionate. If you were rude and aggressive, do you think I would confide in you? I would most likely run and avoid you at all cost. We must learn to do everything in love. Why? Love covers multitude of sins.
As a member of the body of Christ, we can’t have the “Who gonna check me!?” mentality. That’s what people in the world do. They have made themselves the rulers of their lives. We know who we serve and has predestined our paths.
Do you have someone who you can confide in when temptations comes?
Is anyone accountable for you? Is there a sister/brother you feel needs someone to be accountable for them?
Are you being honest to your accountable partner(s)?