Discipline and Accountability
Discipline and accountability … two words that we, as a society, like to avoid at times. As parents, we want to discipline our children but also are concern about being liked by them. As friends, we do not like to tell each other the honest truth when one of us is unkind or mean spirited, because we like to hold on to this ideal of “friendship loyalty”. As leaders, we shy away from accountability and view discipline as a negative concept that may lead to employee disengagement; let’s tell them the positives, then maybe the negatives will hopefully go away? The reality is when we do that, we inadvertently short change a person’s growth process. As individuals, we do not practice enough self-reflections to realize the amount of our self-pride is choking out our need for self-accountability and to grow as a person. I should warn that I would not be opening this message with warm and fuzzy words when it comes to discipline & accountability. And the truth is we don’t have to. Truth has the power to transform. Accountability is facing the truth and admitting one’s fault so that we have that awareness to start the process of growth.
Have you heard a phrase that gave you an “ah ha” moment? A dear friend of mine, who happen to be also a well accomplished coach, once said “accountability is a form of caring”. We care enough about the individual that as a friend, as a parent, as their leader, we are to hold up a mirror for that individual and help them face their mistakes so that the tuition paid for those mistakes are not lost in vain. We are to tell each other the truth so that when we act out of pride we can work on immediately correcting our steps. How do we discipline ourselves so that our lives would be fruitful? God promises us that the “fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control” (Galatians 5:22-23). If our actions are not of love, we should consider where the opportunities and gaps lie, and often times it starts with the self. Proverbs 3:11-12: “My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline and do not resent his rebuke, because the Lord disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in”. I guess Coach knew a thing or two about God’s Kingdom Laws! Many times I was held accountable, especially in the areas of my pride, and I am sad to say that I kicked and screamed along the way. Sure, no one really likes to hear anything less than positive about them self, but I am so grateful that person loved me enough that they refused to leave me where I was, by holding me accountable, therefore strengthening my characters. As a friend, a parent, and a leader, love your friends, your children and your employees enough to give them the gifts of discipline and accountability.
Father God, thank you for your Word, the eternal guidance for our souls and spirits. Thank you for not forsaking your children who are at times rebellious and prideful, yet because of Your grace, we forever have the gift of salvation, Your love and Your divine instructions which discipline us to live a victorious and fruitful life. We thank You for your son Jesus, who so loved the world that He laid down His life willingly for us. When He walked on this earth, He not only loved us but He also taught with authority so that we may know the truth. In Jesus name, we pray and praise you!