Last night one of the participants in our Financial Learning Groups asked about accountability within marriage. The original question pertained to how accountability works regarding staying on a budget-and what to do when one or both wants to or actually does break the budget. The energy level definitely rose a few levels after he asked that question and everyone was ready for an answer. I shot from the hip a bit but realized that these are some of my core convictions on the subject of how accountability works in a marriage.
- In order to be accountable I have to be transparent-I'm making a conscious decision to willingly reveal what I'm thinking, feeling, believing, desiring to someone I am in a relationship with. They need to be able to call me on my crap when they see it.
- I must listen and consider their feedback-my tendency will be to defend, dismiss, explain or justify.
- The person I'm accountable to must be willing to keep a confidence, listen, challenge and ask the questions they may be afraid to ask-if my accountability partner isn't digging around a bit and asking the uncomfortable questions that the Holy Spirit places in their mind, it may not really be accountability and I need a new Accountability Partner.
- I am accountable to my spouse but I need someone else-it's easy to power up or go silent on my spouse, I'm not proud of it but I'm more likely to do whatever it takes to keep the peace at home, especially if my wife is challenging me on an area I need to change. I'm less likely to pull those stunts with a trusted friend-and if I do they can call me on it. One additional thought-your accountability partner must be the same gender. Guys with Guys and Ladies with Ladies. I've seen too many affairs begin when men and women who are not married to each other share intimate details from their lives with someone other than their spouse-don't go there!
What are your thoughts on accountability?