Accountability is a very important aspect of being a follower of Christ. The Bible calls us to be held accountable by those close to us and those we trust. Those people that have our best interest at heart. It’s a very important task that we should only give to those who will, in fact, hold us accountable.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 says: “Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, one will lift up his companion.”
We need those people in our lives, that will hold us up, and hold us accountable to the Word of God. If we try to follow Christ on our own, we will surely fail. We cannot grow or learn in a vacuum.
My marriage is the most important relationship in my life, besides my relationship with God. And I believe that my husband and I need to hold each other accountable. Not only do we need people outside of our marriages to help us with this, but we should start with each other.
When my husband and I got married, I bought the Family Life Marriage Bible, authored by Barbara and Dennis Rainey. It’s a great Bible with devotions specific to marriage and parenting. I love it. We try to reference it often.
One of the devotions talks about this very issue, accountability in marriage. Here is an excerpt from this devotion on the areas of accountability that the authors feel we need to focus on:
- Spiritual Health. In order to remain on track, every marriage must involve daily communication with and dependence on God. Most of us are prone to laziness or distraction in the daily maintenance of our spiritual needs. A loving spouse who has permission to encourage us in our devotion to Christ can help by asking open-ended questions such as “What has God been teaching you lately?”
- Emotional and sexual fidelity. This is a potentially sensitive but critical area in any Christian marriage. The way in which you handle the issues of temptation and moral struggles will largely chart the course for your relationship. Neither you nor your spouse can risk opening the door to inappropriate intimacy with someone of the opposite sex, and/or coming in contact with any inappropriate materials or media. Be open and honest about temptations that you are struggling with.
- Schedules. Always try to help each other make good decisions by monitoring each other’s workload and schedules. Making good decisions means saying yes to some good things and no to others. Schedules are ultimately a statement of our true priorities.
- Money and values. Sometimes nothing can create the need for accountability more than the checkbook! We need to be accountable to each other on what we are spending our money on and what major money decisions we are making.
- Parenting practice. Interact and sharpen each other with your parenting styles. We all tend to draw on the parenting techniques modeled for us by our parents. When you notice a good, or bad tendency, encourage your spouse in love, and help them improve.
- No secrets. Secrets are one of Satan’s primary tools to divide couples. Accountability between husband and wife is a superb way to keep them from messing with your marriage.
One of the greatest challenges to any marriage is the access we give one another to our lives on a daily basis. Accountability is an honest, practical submission of your life to your spouse that says, “I have no secrets that I will withhold from you.”