Accountability: A Life Support System
Proverbs 27:17 – “As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.”
Let me start by saying that integrity is not something “you do” as much as it is “who you are.” However there are things you can do to help yourself become who you want to be.
For the past several months I have been meeting with a group of baseball coaches and scouts in a small group. We share what’s going on in our life, have a short devotional and prayer time online through a video conference call. Just as iron sharpens iron, these guys sharpen each other. Truthfully, I look forward to 9am every Monday morning.
I have a good friend who is famous for saying “Be intentional about pursuing integrity; find yourself a wing man.” If you’re going to have sustained success as a leader in life, you can’t fly solo. What I mean is, you can’t afford not to have someone in your life that can help you stay accountable.
I have seen so many coaches and leaders throughout my life that think they can do life alone, only to crash and burn. it is vital that you have an accountability partner that can help you stay accountable.
I experienced this last week, I received an early morning phone call from a trusted friend and accountability partner. This wasn’t your normal “Hey how are you doing” phone call. It was a call of accountability, making sure I am getting enough rest and not burning the candle at both ends in my scouting responsibilities while balancing my home life and spiritual life.
I was immediately confronted with two choices to respond; I could either embrace his direct, firm and loving accountability … or get defensive, prideful and angry shutting him out. I chose to humbly embrace it, knowing he truly cares about me, my family and my well being. Leaders embrace accountability!
Accountability is a powerful thing. It is actually a barometer of whether you are living an “integrated” life or not. If you are avoiding accountability or if you balk at the idea, it should be a huge red flag to yourself and to others.
Having a friend who knows your strengths as well as your flaws can help you stay on the right path. You are much more likely to do the right thing when you know others are counting on you and holding you accountable.
If there are places where you are tempted to compromise your integrity, you should never go there alone. As a matter of fact … run! Travel, computer usage, discretionary time, and even a meeting with someone you shouldn’t be meeting with, can all represent danger zones. I encourage you to stay in healthy environments. One’s that will build you up – not tear you down.
Build yourself a lifestyle that is surrounded by accountability partners (“A Wing Man”) and you will increase your chances of staying faithful. Others in your life are counting on you!
Have a great week!
Kevin Burrell has worked in professional baseball as both a player and MLB scout for the past 32 years, and currently serves on staff with the Chicago White Sox as an area scouting supervisor. Kevin was drafted in the 1st round of the 1981 free agent amateur draft (25th selection overall) by the Boston Red Sox, and played ten years of professional baseball with four different organizations. He and his wife, Valerie, live in Sharpsburg, Ga. with their two children.
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