Hebrews 13 carries multiple guidelines for the way God wants His people to live. These guidelines speak of a life of hospitality, honor, contentment, and praise. All things that point back to Christ and reflect His character and nature.
As I was reading, I felt The Lord highlight verses 7 and 17 to me. Verse 7 says:
"Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith."
As I was reading this, God brought me back to when I was in 6th grade at my childhood church. Everything I was learning at the time about the person of Jesus, the significance of Holy Communion, and what true faith looked like, was taught to me by my pastors and leaders. These were people who had gone before me and had come to understand how the Lord was asking them to live a life of honor and obedience. They had accepted the responsibility of modeling true devotion and teaching His Word.
Fast forward to a call I had last month with my former pastor. I had the joy of sharing that not only was I able to apply that same level of growth and devotion to my own life, but now I had the honor of being a mentor to other students. God has brought my journey full circle in a really beautiful way!
As God's people, we are asked to live out verse 7 and follow in the footsteps of our spiritual mentors. In doing so we need to realize that the words we choose and the actions we make are going to have an impact on the lives of those who come after us.
Verse 17 tells us that our responsibility as Christians goes even further than that, it says:
"Have confidence in your leaders and submit to their authority, because they keep watch over you as those who must give an account. Do this so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no benefit to you."
We must allow ourselves to be poured into by our leaders and invite mentors into our lives. To recognize there will always be room to grow in our relationship with Jesus. Maybe you need to look at the second half of that verse and ask yourself what it would look like to bring joy into your relationships.
I pray these verses provide encouragement to you as you continue your day. As we complete our study on Hebrews, I'd like to leave you with the author's benediction:
"Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. "