Letter #55: Unusual Thankfulness

November 24, 2010

Dear Thanksgiving,

Only one more day until I get to relish in the day all other 364 strive to achieve…the BEST food day. I’m thinking about fasting today to fully embrace you tomorrow…actually yeah right, I’ll just embrace both days!

In the meantime, you are allowing me to reflect on my thankfulness for accountability. This is an aspect of life I have developed deep appreciation for the last few years and one that challenges the socks off me. We live in a society that could care less about accountability. Everyone is out for themselves…how can I get a promotion, make more money, impress a guy, be accepted, make the best grades, etc? In the midst of these quests, integrity is often forgotten.

What exactly is accountability? Well, it’s officially ‘an obligation or willingness to accept responsibility or to account for one’s actions’ according to Webster. Most of the time we hear about accountability and think of accountability partners and people asking us the tough questions. I believe being asked the tough questions, confessing our junk to someone, and having friends who care enough about us to not want to see us fall into the temptations of this world is important. I also believe it’s biblical:

  • “Where there is no guidance the people fall, but in abundance of counselors there is victory.” Prov. 11:14
  • “Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.” Prov. 12:1
  • “Iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.” Prov. 27:17

This is great, but I believe accountability goes deeper than other people. We must hold ourselves accountable as well. At the end of the day, I can hide my sin and struggles really well. I can tell people whatever I want them to hear, but there are two people who know the truth…myself and God. Do I care that God is grieved by my sin? Do I care that even when nobody else knows, He does?

I heard this definition of accountability about a year ago, and it has changed my life: “Accountability is giving permission to someone on earth to ask me the same questions God might ask me in heaven.” WOW. One day, we will all stand before God alone, not with accountability partners. He’s likely to have some questions for me. I might as well practice my answers now.

As we walk through this life, we are to be sanctified (1 Thess. 4:3), which means to be made holy. Who’s asking me the questions that are assisting in my pursuit of becoming more like Christ? Do I care that God knows my heart and my actions whether anyone else does or not?

Today, I am thankful for the accountability I have in my life. For people who aren’t afraid to ask me the tough questions even when I really don’t want to answer. For a God who is worth it and who still loves me in my junk. (Who’s holding you accountable?)

Only one more day until you,

A work in progress


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