As a way of tying this blog into the posts I have been making to my Facebook page I will re-post Monday's Facebook post here today. . .
I've often mentioned the need to exercise caution when selecting an accountability partner so I thought today I'd look at what it takes to be a good accountability partner.
First and most important is your attitude. The best way to put it is that you must be convinced that no matter what another person reveals, "there but for the grace of God go I". It's humility, compassion and understanding all rolled up into a package with an overwhelming desire to see this person redeemed and recovered.
Secondly, you must divest yourself of shaming. "You did what?" must be purged from your vocabulary when receiving another's confidence. Believe me they are filled with enough shame of their own without you piling it on. And they have come to you to begin the journey out of sin and the shame it creates. What they need from you is hope not more shame.
Next is a forward-looking attitude that asks, "So, where do you go from here and how can I help you get there?" This is tied to the hope I just mentioned. Most who come to the point of talking about their junk feel profoundly stuck, trapped. They need to hear talk of movement forward toward clean and healthy.
Next, at some point there needs to be a sense of we. True, these are their issues and it's their struggle and THERE IS NO RESCUING. But they need to know that they are not alone. You are willing to walk this road with them for the next season of their life.
Last, I would remind you that recovery from any kind of sin or addictive behavior is a process of three steps forward and two steps back. At no time can you let yourself become frustrated with the inevitable failures that will temporarily set them back. Your role is to help them up, dust them off and set them on their way again. The only time anyone truly fails is when they give up and quit. Let this truth fill your heart and mind: As long as there is life and breath there is hope.
Being a good accountability partner is the most frustrating and rewarding thing my may ever do short of parenting. I recommend it. You will grow like never before.