5.3 min
By: Joseph Bonifacio

Questions Leaders Need to Ask

Choose humility over humiliation. We need close friends who know so much about us that they can warn us when we’re getting close to danger and call us out when we’re in sin.

A few years ago, Marc Constantino, a good friend and pastor of Victory Metro East, talked with our men campus missionaries on the need to stay connected in relationship with one another. He talked about the reality of people’s lives imploding because they hide their character flaws instead of getting help. He made the statement, “Choose humility over humiliation.”

Everyone has their weak points. And we won’t get away with hiding them or pretending they don’t exist. Unfortunately, we are predisposed to presenting only the positive sides of ourselves. Think of what we tweet or put on Facebook. None of them are incriminating, except the pieces we’re okay with confessing.

That’s why Pastor Marc emphasized the need for close friends who know so much about you that they can warn you when you’re getting close to danger and call you out when you’re in sin. This is called accountability.

When I heard his message, I wrote down a few more questions that I want to ask myself.

  1. How long am I in this for?

Sinful things often promise short-term gains, but cannot fulfill long-term dreams. Every time we give in to sin or disguise our mistakes, we are making a decision for short-term gain versus long-term goal fulfillment. Often, by the time the consequences of our actions hit us, they’re at a much higher price than we expected. And whatever joys or pleasures we thought we gained have long since expired.

“Food gained by fraud tastes sweet to a man, but he ends up with a mouth full of gravel.”

Proverbs 20:17 (NIV 1984)

  1. Do I feel entitled to anything?

I’ve seen in myself that when sin knocks, it’s easier to give in to it when I’m feeling entitled to something. Maybe it’s when I’ve been doing a lot for others, or I’m envying someone else’s success, or I’m just having a hyper-inflated sense of entitlement. Regardless of the reason, the justifications are similar:

“I really owe this to myself.”

“I’ve been doing so much for other people. I need some ‘me time.’”

“Everyone’s getting theirs, when do I get my share?”

Another twisted version of entitlement comes with being offended. It works like this: someone did you wrong, so you are justified in doing wrong back. Like taking money from an office that you feel doesn’t treat you well. Or responding harshly to someone you suspect is doing you wrong. Here’s something I’m glad my parents drilled into me: I can’t control what other people do; but I have the Holy Spirit, so I can control myself regardless of what they do.

  1. Am I acting like the rules don’t apply to me? 

It’s no coincidence that people’s lives implode just when it seems like everything is going for them. That’s because success, wealth, and recognition can breed a feeling that we are playing by a different set of rules from everyone else.

Everyone has to account for their expenses, except me.

It’s not a good idea for people to drink so much, but I can control it.

Other people really should be more careful with members of the opposite sex (or same sex), but I am not as easily tempted.

Articles like this would be good for my friends, but not for me. I don’t need accountability in my life.

I appreciate Pastor Marc for raising those uncomfortable questions with me. I proceeded to have a few penetrating but healthy conversations with friends afterwards and I’m thankful for them. How about you? Do you have people whom you are accountable to?

About the author
Joseph Bonifacio

Joseph Bonifacio is the director of Every Nation Campus Philippines and a lead pastor with Victory Katipunan. When he isn’t working in the campus or doing life with students, you can find him at home or in an adventure with his wife, Carla, and their two sons, Philip and Manu. Joe, as most people call him, admits that his hair (or lack of) never distracts him, but that the thought of a chocolate chip cookie almost always does.

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