Steve reminded me of the hope I have in God. I realized that God had provided me with Steve and other brothers who were willing to strap on the armor and fight the good fight with me. I just had to allow them in

That week with my accountability group, I shared with them what I was really going through. I felt this strange emotional release as I just sat there with my friends, weeping. They listened, they prayed, they showed up.

Guys, we need each other. This thing called Christianity really is a team sport. We weren't meant to do it alone. You have a wife, children and brothers who want to get close to you. When you self-protect, you break their hearts. You also break the heart of our Father.

Accountability begins with Christ, spreads to your wife, and flows out to your buddies.

My experience during my depression changed my life and my perspective on what "being a friend" really means. It's about more than pats on the back, high fives and occasional lunches to catch up on each other's lives. It's about real men trying to finish well - men who have the guts to dive under the waterline and share their hearts with each other. To deal with the real issues in life and get to the bottom of them.

Let me push on your chest today and challenge you to do a "heart check" on what's going on below the waterline in your life. Next, let a few guys get close enough to know what you're really feeling. Are there issues to be dealt with that you're running from? Chances are, they know it and you know it, so why not let them in? Last of all, be sure you're investing in your friends during the daylight hours so when nighttime falls and you need them, they'll know your voice.

I think I'll give Steve a call and check up on him.



Portions of this article were adapted from 40 Unforgettable Dates with Your Mate, Copyright 2002 by Dr. Gary and Barbara Rosberg, all rights reserved. Published by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., www.tyndale.com. To order this resource or to find our more about America's Family Coaches, visit www.afclive.com or call 1-888-ROSBERG. For more information about the Divorce-Proofing America's Marriages campaign logon to www.divorceproof.com.