How do we stay sharp spiritually? What’s the secret? Prayer and Bible study? Absolutely. But there’s more: Accountability.
16 A person strays from the path of understanding comes to rest in the company of the dead.
When we are saved, we become one of God’s children and part of His family. In our new family, we must learn to live together in unity and harmony:
Unity- One body [of Christ], one Spirit [Who unites us], called to one hope [heaven], one Lord [Jesus], one faith [in Him], one baptism [one death, burial and resurrection], and children of one God who is the Father of all of us (Ephesians 4:4-6).
Harmony- “a consistent, orderly, or pleasing arrangement of parts; congruity.” One body (unity), many parts (harmony). Paul used the body and its parts as an illustration for the Body of Christ:
1 Corinthians 12:12 Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ (continued in 13-20).
WE NEED EACH OTHER. In fact, we need constant encouragement, instruction, fellowship, scrutiny, and exhortation (urgent advice and direction). Listen to Solomon:
15:22 Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed. The idea here is to have certain people for certain areas hold us accountable in those areas of our lives.
15:23 A person finds joy in giving an apt reply— and how good is a timely word! It’s a two-way street: Giving and receiving.
24:6 Surely you need guidance to wage war, and victory is won through many advisers. Again, the more counsel we garner, the better our success rate.
The biggest problem we face is asking the LORD to bring someone into our lives to walk with us. Most people don’t like that kind of vulnerability. Also, it’s time-consuming. It takes commitment. What we have to decide is, “Is it worth it?” Darn tootin’, it is! My most cherished relationships are with people with whom I am committed in an accountability relationship, beginning with my wife, Robin. I am the person I am today because God has used her to sharpen me, to encourage me, to focus me, and to urge me on to a higher and deeper walk with the LORD Jesus. I also have other guys with whom I grew up who know me from way back; they can see through any smoke screen I might put up. There is nothing hidden from these guys.
Are you ready to grow? Are you ready to take a “leap of faith?” Then ask the LORD to bring someone (or someones) into your life to do life with. It may take a while, so just keep on asking and seeking. Soon, you’ll be knocking!