Band of Brothers: Why Accountability Matters
Pastor Monte Knudsen, Faith Christian Outreach Church, Mt. Pleasant, Iowa
When Tony first asked us to write a few things about the friendship/accountability Mike, Dan and myself have enjoyed over three decades, it really made me think about the difference this relationship has made in my life.
John Ruskin once wrote, “When a man is wrapped up in himself, he makes a pretty small package.”
No matter how comfortable a relationship is, you still must work at it to keep it meaningful and worthwhile. You can’t accomplish that if you are always concerned about yourself. Our relationship has grown and developed because all three of us have a greater desire for each other’s success than our own. This has enabled us to share ideas regularly that worked and critique each other without fear.
It gave us the liberty to be authentic when we struggled and share great advice with each other without feeling judged. I personally never thought about the importance of this kind of relationship until after 10 years of ministry. All three of us felt destined to something significant and realized we needed to know who we could count on, who our real friends were. We wanted to know, if I succeed or fail, these are the guys who will love me for who I am.
In reality, you are only as authentic as you want to be. By hiding your wrong attitudes, weaknesses or sins, you never allow real change or real wholeness to happen in your life. We think we protect ourselves, when in truth we hold ourselves in bondage.
Mike, Dan and I gave each other the freedom to be honest, to be authentic and helped each grow. Not only has this made me a better minister, it’s made me a better person, a better husband and father.
I think, personally, many never enjoy and benefit from this kind of relationship because it costs them. It’s not cheap. It’s much like the new wedding cake craze that builds cakes out of styrofoam, then covers them with fondant and gum paste. They look good on the outside, like the real thing, but the inside is hollow. Why do people do it? Because it is much cheaper.
I want to encourage anyone who may not have developed this kind of relationship, it’s worth the price.
Love you guys! Mike—Dan—you’ve changed my life.