The Ratel, also known as the Honey Badger, is a fierce, fighting member of the weasel family. These creatures can be found throughout most of Africa and south Asia. With a ravenous appetite for beehives, the Ratel has developed a close relationship with the Honey Guide Bird, whose sharp eyes can pinpoint a beehive. This symbiotic relationship works to the advantage of both animals. The honey guide leads the ratel to the beehive, and then, waits for the ratel to tear into the hive with its powerful claws. After feasting on the honey, the ratel leaves the larvae, wax, and the hard-to-get honey, for the bird to consume. (Rosevear, 1974. National Geographic, 1981)
The ratel and honey guide bird need one another and are more productive together than either would be on their own. Likewise, as women seeking to grow in Christ-likeness, we need other women in our lives who will help us be more for Jesus than we could ever be alone. While many are trying to be “Superwoman,” flying through life like they can do it all, the truth is: we can’t do it all. And if we are not careful, we will fly into a building, crashing and burning in a moral failure, or run out of steam before we reach the finish line Christ has set for us.
Webster defines accountability as “The obligation to report, explain, or justify; being responsible for or answerable to someone.”
Practically speaking, accountable relationships happen only when we give others permission to walk alongside us, observe our manner of life, and share with us those things that don’t measure up to Christ.
Accountability is a vital part of discipleship. Women need other women to come alongside them. We were designed for relationships – to do life together. Ecclesiastes puts it this way, “Two are better than one because they have a good reward for their efforts. For if either falls, his companion can lift him up” (Eccl. 4:9-10).
Practical advantages of accountability from Galatians 6:1-6:
- We are less likely to be overtaken by sin.
- We can better see the big picture. Help us see our blind spots.
- We receive spiritual support that can strengthen us.
- We receive encouragement to reach our goals.
- We receive prayer support from others.
- We remain constant in the daily disciplines of the Christian life—Bible study, prayer, memorizing Scripture, and sharing our faith.
- We establish meaningful relationships with others who desire this level of friendship.