Gordon Green, M.Div., M.A. Counseling
I watched a few minutes of the Golden Globes a couple of weeks ago. Meryl Streep accepted her Lifetime Achievement award and proceeded to call out soon-to-be President Donald Trump for mocking a disabled news journalist. While I question the place and timing of her pointed criticism, I do appreciate Ms. Streep’s exhortation to the news media to hold our President accountable. In its truest sense, accountability is a gift from those who speak the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15). Unfortunately, much of what we hear or read from most media outlets is unloving and not always truthful. But when we do confront others with the truth of Scripture with the aim to reconcile them to God, we are acting as His agents in offering the gift of life (2 Corinthians 5:11-21).
As some of you may know, I work with recovering addicts. Accountability is paramount to maintaining sobriety. When those of us in this ministry risk the relationship to say or do what’s best for the one who is struggling, we show a godly love and care for the other person that puts them first over our own concerns. It’s risky, and hence easy to rationalize why we should remain silent. Having said that, we must not rush into the fray of the battle either—particularly when driven by fear or anger. Missed timing or ill motives will cause as much or more harm than when we do not speak out at all. The key is to wait on the Holy Spirit. He will expose our own issues and humble our hearts so that when we do proclaim the truth, it will be with grace-filled words that demonstrate genuine concern for the other person. Don’t expect to receive applause, however. Often, even when we get it right, there is backlash. Just keep praying and patiently waiting for God to breakdown their resistance and set them free to love and serve Him with gladness and singleness of heart. It is an act of grace—both receiving and offering the gift of accountability!