“Obey your spiritual leaders, and do what they say. Their work is to watch over your souls, and they are accountable to God. Give them reason to do this with joy and sorrow. That would certainly not be for your benefit.” Hebrews 13:17
I tremble with awe and fear when reading this verse. Specifically where it says, “Their work is to watch over your souls, and they are accountable to God.” I tremble at this! I am very humbled that God has chosen me to do such a work, but at the same time a sense of holy fear and awe that I am accountable to God for those I pastor including my family.
This is why I am focused in growing true disciples. I look back through my 17 years of ministry and see how I have strayed and how I have tried as best I know how through the Holy Spirit’s leading to stay focused.
For this reason, this is why we do what we do. I can just imagine when I give an account to how I watched over the souls of people. God won’t ask me about the fluff stuff. He will ask me what I did to draw students closer to Him? Did I use activity as a filler or did I bring them to the throne of grace?
I am afraid of some of the things I have done in the name of God. I am afraid of what I see other youth groups do in the name of God. If I were living in the Old Testament times, would I have been struck down due to my disobedience? Did I give students life through what I taught and what they saw or did I give them a false hope? Am I preaching the whole Gospel? Am I calling students to repentance? Am I challenging them to fall in love with Jesus-not just attend church? Am I doing things in ministry because it’s the cool thing to do or is it the God thing to do?
To those who wonder–this is why I am such a focused individual–because I am accountable to God. I look at you students and try to see what God sees. You are either royalty or kidnapped royalty. If you are royalty, I look at ways to further your love for him–we do things intentionally in our events and activities. If you are kidnapped royalty, I pray for opportunities and events that will help bring salvation through Jesus to your life.
Being a pastor is no easy task I assure you. When I entered into youth ministry, I thought I would get to play video games all day, eat pizza, and sleep. Boy was I wrong! (Some people still ask me what I do all day–it is quite comical.) I found out quickly that as a pastor, we are on the front lines battling for the souls of people–teaching students, rebuking students, correcting students, training students in righteousness, and preparing and equipping students to do every good work. (Read 2 Timothy 3:16)It would be great to tell you that all of this is fun work. Teaching, training, and equipping is what I love to do, but it’s the rebuking and correcting that isn’t the best part of the job–but it’s something that I am called to do and I will be held accountable to God for this.
In this post, I speak from a pastors perspective, but as a mentor or layperson, you face the same accountability. If you serve in any capacity warring for preschoolers, children, student or adults souls, then this Word from God is for you! Does this not make it all worth it? Knowing that we are in the battle for people’s souls? We may not see the fruit now, but wait until our Homecoming–what a fantastic day that will be!
I don’t know if this makes sense to anyone else, but I had to write my thoughts out as I read the Scriptures this morning. If this makes any sense to you, I would love to hear your thoughts…….