In the West the world has the church by the throat in three areas: busyness, materialism, and sex.
The many multiplied opportunities for involvement leave us breathless. We want to maximize our potential and there are countless possibilities. The fast pace is exhilarating. However, we lose the time we need for relaxing, for enjoying our spouse, for playing with our children, for visiting with God, for meditating, and for loving our neighbors. In other words, we lose out on life.
Our exorbitant standard of living has increased so gradually and become so pervasive that we are blind to it until we get acquainted with a refugee family or are shocked into awareness by a trip to a third world country. The impact is often so great that travelers must be ‘debriefed’ so they don’t offend their friends upon return. But the result is that most of us are unable to give generously to God’s work because of our high level of personal consumption.
Our high standards for quality also affect our churches. Budgets for ministering to the needs of our community and our world are squeezed by the need for bigger and better facilities, more staff, and measuring up to model churches.
Our world is saturated with images of sex and attitudes toward sex. We live in increasing cultural pollution, but we little notice the change. The ubiquitous images, the fashionable dress habits, the constant innuendos, and the ever-present opportunities for indiscretions are leading more Christian workers into dangerous situations. Just this year a mission leader I highly respected resigned from his organization, divorced his wife and married his office partner.
We must guard ourselves against these areas of temptation. I strongly urge every individual, and especially every Christian worker, to enter into a solemn accountability relationship with three or four individuals, or at least one individual, to sit down face-to-face, at least every two weeks, look one another directly in the eye, and ask and answer the hard questions.
Below I list a number of accountability questions I have collected from various sources, primarily oriented for men. Be sure to include the questions you need!
May God mold us into people who seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness (Mt. 6:33).
Lists of Personal Accountability Questions
The Questions President Bill Waldrop gave ACMC field staff:
· Have you inappropriately touched a woman since we last met?
· Have you viewed pornography in any form since we last met?
· Have you had a regular time of personal worship in so far as your travel schedule and need for rest has allowed?
· Have you had a regular intercession time in so far as your travel schedule and need for rest has allowed?
· Have you lied to me?
David Mays’ accountability group:
Since we last met,
· Have you had a consistent time of Bible reading and prayer?
· Have you viewed pornography in any form?
· Have you touched or looked at a woman inappropriately?
· Have you taken two full evenings off work?
· Is there anyone to whom you have been disrespectful?
· How has your countenance been?
· Did you invest the proper quality/quantity of time in your most important relationships?
· Did your life reflect verbal integrity?
· Have you been knowingly disobedient to the Lord in any way?
· Have you lied to me just now?
A colleague, ‘02
1. Am I investing time alone with God?
2. Is my thought life pure?
3. Am I always honest?
4. Am I giving more than I am receiving?
5. Am I quick to forgive and committed to love in all my relationships?
6. Am I using my “power’ for the glory of God alone?
7. Am I maintaining a healthy, balanced schedule?
Another colleague, Sept. ‘01
· Have you been with a woman since we last talked, in a way that might be seen as compromising?
· Have any of your financial dealings lacked integrity?
· Have you exposed yourself to any sexually explicit material?
· Have you spent adequate time in prayer and Bible Study? What is God teaching you?
· Have you given priority time to your family?
· Have you fulfilled the mandates of your calling?
· Have you made any progress dealing with the strongholds in your life?
· What have you done to reach out to the unsaved?
· Are you guarding your heart and mind in Christ Jesus?
· Have you just lied to me?
From Cultivating a Life for God, by Neil Cole
· How have you experienced God in your life this week?
· What is He teaching you?
· How are you responding to His prompting?
· Do you have a need to confess any sin?
· How did you do with your reading this week?
· Did you invest the proper quality/quantity of time in your most important relationships? Did your life reflect verbal integrity?
· Did you express a forgiving attitude toward others?
· Did you practice any undisciplined behavior?
· Were you honorable in your financial dealings?
· Were you sexually pure?
· Did you pray for your pre-Christian friends?
From The Purity Principle, Randy Alcorn, p. 87
· How are you doing with God?
· With your mate?
· What temptations are you facing, and how are you dealing with them?
· How has your thought life been this week?
· Have you been spending regular time in the Word and prayer?
· Who have you been sharing the gospel with?
· Have you lied in any of your answers?
· How can we pray for you and help you?
From “Accountability: Pursuing Vital Relationships, Part Two - Play Ball!” by Jim Clayton, http://www.menofintegrity.org
Suggestions for Initial Areas of Accountability:
· Prayer life
· Bible reading/study time
· Integrity issues
· Spending time with the family
· Work issues
· Harboring anger or resentment
· Exercise, dieting
· Things shared previously
Sample Accountability Questions
Regardless of the accountability questions you choose, the last question should be "Have you been truthful about everything we have discussed?" There will be times when that question is necessary, and true accountability demands it.
· Have you spent time with God on a regular basis?
· Have you compromised your integrity in any way?
· Has your thought life been pure?
· Have you committed any sexual sin?
· How much time did you spend in prayer this week?
· Did you pray for the others in this group?
· Did you put yourself in an awkward situation with a woman?
· What one sin plagued your walk with God this week?
· Did you accomplish your spiritual goals this week?
· Are you giving to the Lord's work financially?
· How have you demonstrated a servant's heart?
· Do you treat your peers and coworkers as people loved by God?
· What significant thing did you do for your wife and/or family?
· What was your biggest disappointment? How did you decide to handle it?
· What was your biggest joy? Did you thank God?
· What do you see as your number one need for next week?
· Are you satisfied with the time you spent with the Lord this week?
· Did you take time to show compassion for others in need?
· Did you control your tongue?
· What did you do this week to enhance your relationship with your spouse and/or child(ren)?
· Did you pray and read God's Word this week? What did you derive from this time?
· In what ways have you stepped out in faith since we last met?
· I what ways has God blessed you this week? And what disappointments consumed your thoughts this week?
· Did you look at a woman in the wrong way?
· How have you been tempted this week? How did you respond?
· How has your relationship with Christ been changing?
· Did you worship in church this week?
· Have you shared your faith this week? How?
· What are you wrestling with in your thought life?
· What have you done for someone else this week?
· Are the "visible" you and the "real" you consistent?
From Dave Mathes, November ‘04
When I see accountability teams, often
a) They don't go far enough and
b) They address symptoms not the source.
I would add a few other things: