1 Peter 5:8-9 – “Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.”
Last week my boy Bobby Bishop dropped some wisdom regarding accountability in his devotional called Build the Walls. Alright, real talk, the devotional was really about sexual accountability. Yup…that’s right, I said the word “sexual” in a devotional. (Gasp!) When Bobby and I first communicated about the subject matter of his devotional, I found myself convicted about the lack of transparent accountability in my walk with Christ. The more I thought and prayed on it, I was reminded of how important it is to build with like-minded believers in order to “stand firm in the faith.”
Over the Thanksgiving holidays, the wifey and I hit this small zoo in Hot Springs, Arkansas with the rest of her family. Shortly after our arrival, we caught the zoo-keeper preparing to feed the cougars. As he prepped, the zoo-keeper dropped facts and the cougars paced back and forth, waiting. I didn’t notice it until the zoo keeper said it, but the cougars were watching the children who were sticking their fingers through the first of two cages. The children did not consider that being so close to a predator could change their life forever, but others did. The children were protected by both the cage walls and the wisdom of those that surrounded them. What if those cage walls had never been put up? What if those children didn’t have someone to direct them away from potential danger?
Our scripture focus tells us to be self-controlled and alert. Let’s flip it like this…would you wait until you fell to the ground to create a safety net or put one in place before injury? In other words, get a plan to help you abstain from sin rather than sinning and regretting the decision. If you are apart of the forty-seven percent of Christian men who say that pornography is a major problem in the home, purchase an internet filter that will help take away the capability to view it. If you struggle with unclean speech, get with someone who will call you out when your tongue is setting fires (James 3:5) and hold you accountable. Surround yourself around other mature believers. Dedicate yourself to constant prayer. Study scripture. Transparent accountability is difficult, but it’s essential for growth.
The walls of accountability do not stand to restrain you, but to give you freedom in Christ! Galatians 5:1 reminds us, “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.”