11 Sep


The wise preacher declared, “Two are better than one because…For if they fall, one will lift up his companion.  But, woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he has no one to help him up” (Eccle.4:9,10)

Consider a few areas where Barbara and I have learned to practice accountability in our own marriage:

1.  Spiritual health.  In order to remain on track, every marriage must involve daily communication with and dependence on God.  Most of us are prone to laziness or distraction in the daily maintenance of our spiritual needs.  A loving spouse who has permission to encourage us in our devotion to Christ can help by asking open-ended questions such as, “What has God been teaching you lately?”

2.  Emotional and sexual fidelity.  This is a potentially sensitive but critical area in any Christian marriage.  The way in which you handle the issues of temptation and moral struggles will largely chart the course for your relationship.  Neither you nor your spouse can risk opening the door to inappropriate intimacy with someone of the opposite sex.  Be open and honest about temptations that you are struggling with.

3.  Schedules.  We try to help each other make good decisions by monitoring each other’s workload and schedules.  Making good decisions means saying yes to some good things and no to others.  This is one of the biggest struggles that Barbara and I have faced in our marriage and family.  Schedules are ultimately a statement of our true priorities.

4.  Money and values.  Nothing in our marriage created the need for accountability more than the checkbook!  Early on it became a fork in the road as to what each of us felt was most important.  I recall some early accountability tests.  Would I listen to her?  Would I listen to her advice?  Would she trust me with a final decision?  These were all natural opportunities to practice godly, caring accountability in each others life.

5.  Parenting practice.  When Barbara and I had our first child, we began the lifelong process of being  accountable to each other for our performance as parents.  Early on we interacted and  sharpened each other on our parenting styles.  We all tend to draw on the parenting techniques modeled for us by our own parents.  When Barbara and I  noticed a good or bad tendency, we would either encourage or help the other improve.

6.  No secrets.  Secret’s are one of Satan’s primary tools to divide couples.  Accountability between husband and wife is a superb way to keep them from messing with your marriage.

One of the greatest challenges to any marriage is the access we give one another to our lives on a daily basis.  Accountability is an honest, practical submission of your life to your spouse that says, “I have no secrets that I will withhold from you.”

NOTE:  This article is from the book Family Life and Marriage Bible by Dennis and Barbara Rainey.

NOTE:  Daily there is a new post to help your marriage succeed.

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