Discipleship and Accountability

Have you thought about taking your next steps in discipleship? Placing priority on your personal plan for discipleship helps you then disciple others and obey Jesus' final directive while on earth.
February 21, 2023

Discipleship and Accountability

Whether we are leaders in our homes or leaders in our churches, we can often point our fingers at others who are lackadaisical in their spiritual commitments while failing to address spiritual failure in our own lives. Jesus had something to say about that attitude in Matthew 7:3-5. Before we can help others grow in their faith walks, we have to look at our own lives and take care of the beam or plank in our eyes before helping someone with a speck in his. You need a plan that includes an accountability person and conversation starters to hold yourself accountable. 

Develop a Plan for Discipleship

If you do not yet have a plan for personal discipleship, you can access Travis Agnew’s Distinctive Discipleship plan here.  This resource will enable you to complete the following statements to develop a personal plan that is unique to you:

  • I need to delight in Jesus more than…
  • My disobedience that needs to be addressed is…
  • The pivotal doctrine for me to study is…
  • I need development in learning how to…
  • I will focus on the spiritual discipline of…
  • My prayer of dependence will ask God to 

Find an Accountability Person

Everybody needs someone in their lives who loves them well enough to ask the hard questions. If you do not have someone who has taken the lead in discipling you, you may need to seek out that person. Here are some things to consider in finding that accountability person: 

  • Is this person further along in their faith than I am? 
  • Does this person have the time to disciple me? 
  • Is this person able to be objective and push in when I need to hear truth in love? 
  • Will this person hold things in confidence unless the things I share cause my life or another’s well-being to be in danger? 

Agree on Questions to Be Used in Accountability Conversations

Begin each session with prayer. Then use the following categories and questions as a guide to dive into the discipleship session. The accountability partner should be free to allow the Spirit to determine which categories and questions become the priority during the time of discipleship. 

  1. Spiritual Life
    Where did you see God at work this week? Have you consistently read God’s word this week? How were you impacted by what you read? Describe your prayer life. How were you tempted this week? What was your response to temptation? Do you have unconfessed sin? Did you stop and worship this week? Were you consumed with something you should have given to Jesus this week? 
  2. Home Life
    Did you spend meaningful time with your spouse in conversation and intimacy? Did you and your spouse spur each other on in faith? Did you spend meaningful time with your children in both conversation and discipleship? When did you have fun and laugh heartily this week? Have you been a good steward of your resources this week (time and finance)?
  3. Work Life
    Are there difficult relationships at work? Temptations? Stress? Unbalanced expectations? Issues of moral concern? Is your current place of employment still where you need to be?
  4. Ministry
    Are there difficult relationships at church? Temptations? Stress? Have you ministered to someone this week? Have you shared the gospel with someone this week? Have you called out or equipped a new leader? Are you casting vision with your leadership team for future ministry and growth? What is your biggest ministry concern?
  5. God’s Will
    Do you believe you are doing the things God has called and equipped you to do? Is there a secret or a moral issue that hinders your faith and ministry? What is God asking you to prioritize that you are not prioritizing? Are you being honest about who you are before God and before others? 

Share your prayer requests for the week with your accountability partner. Always end the session by answering the following question: What are your plans for being faithful in the above areas? 

Placing priority on your personal plan for discipleship helps you then disciple others. You will never be able to lead someone further along in their faith journey than where you currently are in your faith journey. The directive from Jesus in Matthew 28:16-20 is to go and make disciples, baptize them, and teach them to obey God’s commands. In addition to God’s Word showing the way to Jesus, your life is a testimony of God’s love and faithfulness. Your example will be one of the tools God desires to use to declare the Gospel to those around you. As you enlist someone to come alongside you in a discipleship mentor role, you can begin to think about a person you can disciple in the same way.