The Mentoring Manifesto, Vol. 68: Habits and Accountability Beyond the Checklist Mindset
Habits, disciplines, routines. These words always seem to appear in the headlines at the beginning of a new year. They are, of course, not limited to Jesus-followers, but I find that they take on a life of their own in faith-based communities. For me, the idea of spiritual disciplines or habits used to come with a nagging feeling that God’s approval of me was contingent on my performance, and missing the target meant I was slipping in the “Christian Rankings” report God reviewed every Monday, much like you or I might review the College Football Top 25.
The next step up from habits and disciplines is accountability. But unfortunately, accountability groups and partners often bring their own baggage in the form of legalism and gossip while lacking one crucial ingredient…trusted relationships.
In a mentoring group, we want to help our mentees develop good habits, and we want to encourage accountability, but not in service of creating some Christian checklist, which is how many of your mentees will view these things when they enter your group.
Instead, we want to help them understand how our habits should help us discover the deep joy of the “surpassing worth of knowing Jesus Christ my Lord,” (Philippians 3:8) and how accountability only works when it happens in “a place safe enough to tell the worst about you and still be loved just as much, if not more, for sharing it,” (Bo’s Café).
The resources below should help you and your mentees explore healthy habits and practical accountability without losing sight of the goal of these endeavors…going deep with God and with other people.
THE DARK SIDE OF DISCIPLINE
Self-discipline is a good and God-honoring thing. But it can easily become an ultimate thing and turn into a soul-sucking idol. How do you avoid crossing over to the dark side of discipline? This 3-day reading plan from Jordan Raynor will help you answer that question.
THE MOTIVATING POWER OF AN 🔥 AND A ✅
In this blog, Heath Wilson, a Radical Mentor from Knoxville, TN, explores why his New Year’s Resolutions fail every year and then explains the two things he’s doing differently this year to set himself up for success. Hint: He’s not doing it alone.
A HABIT CALLED FAITH WITH JEN POLLOCK MICHEL
Habits play an important role in faith, helping lead us to faith as we learn to see, know, live, love, and obey. In this episode of the Gospel for Life podcast, Daryl Dash and author Jen Pollock Michel discuss how we can use habits to awaken and deepen our faith.
THE TREMENDOUS BEAUTY OF TRUSTING OTHERS
In this video, author and speaker John Lynch reminds us that one of the most astonishing realities of our God is that He reveals Himself through us, through other human beings. But that really only happens in habit-shaping ways when we’re engaged in trusted relationships.
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