Last week I was sitting at a local coffee shop answering emails and catching up on work responsibilities. It was mid-morning and there were several conversations going on around me. I never intentionally listen other conversations, but sometimes the talking is so loud it leaves no doubt about the topic of conversation.
A real estate deal was being brokered a few tables over from me. Another guy was trying to sell a new client on why his company should be chosen to do his marketing. There were also two students discussing a project they were working on for a business class.
Then I looked across the room and could see a conversation but could not hear what was being discussed. However, I knew exactly what was going on. There were two men with their Bibles and journals spread across the table. They were having a great discussion, periodically each taking a moment to write something down in their journal. After an hour or so, I saw them pray with each other, gather up their belongings, and leave.
What an important reminder: each one of us needs that “someone” we do life with who gives us accountability and sharpening.
Why is it important to encourage young adults to have that someone in their lives? Why is it important for us, as young adult ministry leaders, to have that someone we trust and do life with?
Here are three reasons to find an accountability partner.
1. It’s important to have someone who knows your heart.
It’s a good thing to have someone who knows which questions to ask! This individual knows what brings us the most joy as well as our greatest struggles. It’s OK to not be OK around this person. And when that happens, this person will not be the one telling us what we need to do. Instead, they’ll be a listening ear and will share with us the truth that we need to hear.
Romans 12:15 says, “Rejoice with those who rejoice; weep with those who weep.” It’s important to have someone that we can rejoice and weep with – sometimes in the same conversation.
2. It’s valuable to know someone who will pray with and for you.
It’s vital to have someone to text in a moment of temptation or struggle and know they’ll immediately pray with and for you. This is the person with specific aspects of your life recorded in their prayer journal and is in the habit of praying for them. And your own prayer journal shows that this pattern is mutual. Having someone petitioning on your behalf for your daily decisions and opportunities is key.
I Timothy 2:1 reminds us, “First of all, then, I urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for everyone.”
3. It’s helpful to have someone dive into the beauty of scripture right alongside you.
What a fun experience to discover a truth of scripture alongside an accountability partner when we open up the Word together and ask for God to reveal more of Himself to us. It’s vital for us to have that someone who will spur us on and encourage us along the way as we diligently study the Word of God.
The Psalmist understood the crucial need for the word, “Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light on my path” (Psalm 119:105).
As young adult ministry leaders, we need to have that someone of the same gender that we are doing life with on an intentional basis. Because it’s such a crucial part of our lives, we’re able to then share with the young adults in our group of the necessity of having that “someone” in their lives as well.
Mark Whitt is the Collegiate and Young Adult Specialist at Lifeway Christian Resources. Before joining Lifeway, he spent many years on the campus of Murray State University as a campus minister. Connect with Mark via Twitter.