A couple weekends ago, I went on a “girls weekend” with my two childhood besties. We had all experienced a sort of transitional year, and needed the time with just the 3 of us back together like the good old days. As of last year, we all are now married, living in different cities, balancing school, part time and full time jobs, which makes it difficult to spend as much time together as we’d like.
The weather ended up being super cold and rainy, so we sat and talked from literally Noon until Midnight… it’s a female skill 🙂 At the end of the weekend, surprised I hadn’t lost my voice, I felt tired but so refreshed- so happy. I felt strong with the two of them in my court and me in theirs, knowing they were praying for me and loved me, despite my shortcomings.
There’s something hard about sharing the tough stuff with someone, sharing the messiness of life, re-connecting in a deeper way, but when you DO share it and go through it together, it’s raw and real genuine friendship. It’s freeing! Good and godly friendship brings hope.
In one particular conversation, we all realized that many years ago, the 3 of us were each struggling with the SAME THING, but we didn’t tell each other. SHOOT! We could’ve been there for each other! We could have kept each other accountable and held each other up. We could have supported each other in a time where it counted the most! Heck, maybe we could’ve avoided some pain along the road too.
But it’s hard. It’s hard to be vulnerable. It’s hard to admit you need help. And it’s hard to break through the facade of perfection we are “supposed” to maintain. We had to admit to each other that life is messy and we all went through things that didn’t make us “bad”, but were part of our growth.
We took away an opportunity away from close friends to let God use them to minister to us, to correct us, and love us though it. So we promised, complete openness from here on out!
All of this got me thinking about accountability… the thing we resist but we so desperately need for abundant living. Accountability is the glue that keeps us committed to the life we know is worth living, not the one we sometimes settle for.
The Christian life is not a solo sport. There’s nothing that Satan loves more than to make you feel lonely, stuck in sin and defeat, doubting your purpose and isolated from your community.
The cool thing is, this can apply to pretty much anything! As humans, we need community to sharpen and better each other to live out God’s calling in our lives.
If you’re battling gossip, stuck in an unhealthy dating relationship, fighting against an eating disorder, struggling to stop spending so much money, desperate to lose weight and find energy, trying to avoid thinking highly of yourself, or doubting your faith, you need the gentle accountability of a friend to build you up no matter what you’re facing.
If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up! -Ecclesiastes 4:10
Therefore encourage one another and build up one another, just as you also are doing. – 1 Thessalonians 5:11
We are called to invest in each other…We are called to be there for each other through the joys, yes, and also in the struggles. In a world of critics and pitfalls, let’s be encouragers to one another! Let’s sharpen each other and serve each other to physical and spiritual health.
I don’t know where I’d be with my workouts, with my prayer life, with my emotional well-being, with my marriage, and with plenty of difficult situations that have come my way, without someone coming along side, stirring me on to make the right choice. Whether it’s one of my fitness challenge groups with likeminded motivated people, or just a simple Saturday making cookies gleaning wisdom from a wise old friend, accountability has surely been good for me. Not easy, but good.
What in your life do you need accountability and support with? Who in your life can help you do that? Don’t be afraid to get real and tell them you need them! Don’t be afraid of accountability.