Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you.
When you don’t understand what is behind this command in the book of Hebrews, it has a very unpalatable taste. Obey is a strong word. it means to follow instruction or to yield. It has to be done voluntarily.
No one can make another person yield to him or her. If you have to throw your weight around to try and force it you have missed it completely. As the story goes: when a father once shouted at his son to “sit down NOW!” He replied, “I will sit down, but on the inside I am standing up!”
Yielding is an attitude of the heart. It stops you colliding with others. Maybe you are colliding in your home, your workplace or your social circles all the time. You believe they fired you because of the color of your skin, but actuallly they fired you because you would not yield. Learning to yield is a vital part of learning to be successful in life.
Leaders watch over you as ones who must give an account for how they handled your life. You make thier job pleasant and fruitful when you honor them and submit to them. When you understand the power in this, you choose to yield.
The most awesome part of this order that God has instated, is that the leader does not have to get everything right for you to be blessed under his or her leadership.
Hannah, the mother of Samuel, called Eli, “My Lord.” And spoke graciously and submissively to him even when he was so spiritually dense that he mistook her praying and crying as she petitioned God for a child, for drunkenness. How many of us would have taken the opportunity to point out his outrageous incompetence as a leader at that point?
Yet it did not matter to Hannah. She honored him and she received her breakthrough, despite his lack of honor. Why did this work? Because by honoring Eli, she was honoring the One who set him in place as priest at that time.
Many people feel that honoring and submitting to leadership is a diminishing thing. but God has set it up for our advantage, so that in relating correctly within that context, we should get an acceleration of our breakthrough, just as Hannah did.