READING: Hebrews 11-13
TEXTS AND APPLICATION: I am called to be a leader in God’s church. Most days, I love that responsibility. On other days, though, I’m reminded of the incredible responsibility God places on His leaders. Today is one of those days.
As the writer of Hebrews wrote his book, he called his readers to remember those leaders who had spoken the Word to them: “Remember your leaders who have spoken God’s word to you” (Heb. 13:7a). It’s likely that these leaders had passed away, but their lives continued to influence their followers: “As you carefully observe the outcome of their lives, imitate their faith” (Heb. 13:7b). The leaders were to have lived in such a way that others could watch them live — and die — in faith. That reality raises a first question for me: Does my life so clearly imitate Christ that others would want to imitate me?
Later in Hebrews 13, the writer calls the readers to submit to their current leaders who “keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account” (Heb. 13:17a). My job as a church leader is to care for, love, guide, challenge, and correct others — that is, to “keep watch over” their souls. In fact, I will give an account to God for how well I have done so. That’s a heavy duty responsibility. Thus, my second question is: Am I prepared to answer to God for the way I care for His people?
Caring for souls. Watching over them. Living faithfully. Walking worthy of imitation. Only in God’s strength can any one of us live up to these requirements.
ACTION STEPS: If you are a pastor, think today about your responsibility as a leader. Considering it closely should drive you to your knees. If you’re not a pastor, pray for your pastor today.
PRAYER: “Lord, my calling is beyond me. Make me so faithful and obedient that I’m prepared to give an account to You.”
TOMORROW’S READING: 2 Timothy 1-4