Obey your spiritual leaders and submit to them [continually recognizing their authority over you], for they are constantly keeping watch over your souls and guarding your spiritual welfare, as men who will have to render an account [of their trust]. [Do your part to] let them do this with gladness and not with sighing and groaning, for that would not be profitable to you [either].
Ever since I began my walk with God, I have seen the impact of this verse over and over and over again. There are three types of people in the body of Christ. There are those who have never really acknowledged who their spiritual leaders are because they have no connection with a spiritual leader. There are those who have found such leadership and biblically submitted to them, and there are those who have not submitted to the leadership God has provided for them.
All who have never established who these leaders are, and all who may have done so but do not submit to the Word of God they are taught, do not experience the profitable life God has for them. They don’t get stronger spiritually, and they tend to stay in spiritual limbo. Why? Because God’s Word teaches that you cannot fully mature without the spiritual leadership He has provided for you, and by submitting to the Word of God He brings to you through that leadership.
But I have seen many examples of believers in my own life, and in other churches where people have obeyed this verse and the results are obvious. To submit biblically to godly leadership means you receive the Word they give you, and you honor that Word. That is what walking by faith is all about, doing what God’s Word teaches no matter what. Our spiritual welfare in life has much to do with having spiritual leadership, and submitting to the truths God brings to us through those who watch out for our souls.