"Although he was a Son, he learned obedience through what he suffered." (Hebrews 5:8)
Jesus Christ is currently in glory, in a dimension we refer to as "up there" or "heaven" or "God's throne room," but impossible for us to fathom. From that reality, he intermingles with ours, aiding us in daily life. The book of Hebrews thought of this help as Jesus' high priestly ministry. He can aid us in daily life because of his position at the right hand of God.
We need his friendship and help to obey God. Perhaps you've noticed, but God asks us to do things our bodies of flesh cannot do. Weakness is in us, and, praise the Lord, Jesus sympathizes with us in our weaknesses (Hebrews 4:15). Still, we want to go beyond his sympathy and into his actual help. We want to be different, changed, enabled to obey our Lord. When he asks us to love, we want to love. When he calls us to courageous things, we want to step out in faith. When he beckons us towards care for humanity in one form or another, we want to go. But often we are weak for the task. Even little obediences are a struggle. We battle in our quests for generosity, purity, and goodness.
Jesus, though, can help us obey because, by his Spirit, he lives inside us, and, as the text says, "he learned obedience through what he suffered." What does this mean? What suffering did Jesus learn through?
The previous verse states it clearly: "Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence" (Hebrews 5:7). What does this recall? The garden of Gethsemane, when Jesus prayed to his Father, "If it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will. Your will be done" (Matthew 26:39, 42). On the night he was arrested, the night before he went to the agony of the cross, Jesus' humanity pressed upon him, and he felt the pressure of the most difficult step of obedience anyone anywhere has ever undertaken. And, through prayer, he obeyed. He came out of that garden emboldened for the work of the cross; he would adhere to his Father's will.
Other high priests could relate to the worshipper because they, like the worshipper, were beset with weakness (Hebrews 5:2). But their relatability to us does not get us victory or help. Jesus, though, both relates to us in that he was tempted like we are, but also learned how to obey beyond anyone.
Jesus perfectly and wholly submitted to the Father's will, and now he wants us to come to him so that he might help us from his throne of grace. The difference, in regards to obedience, between Jesus and every other friend is astounding. While friends might sympathize with our failures because they also have failed, Jesus does not bear with our weaknesses in that way. With sympathetic friends like these, success often feels impossible, but at least they understand. But Jesus offers a sympathy that gets us through to the other side, helping us to obey by his power and might. He made it! He obeyed! And now he lives to help us from heaven, not to mention within by his Spirit so that we might also follow the Father.
This truth applies in millions of ways, but I will give you one personal example. I, myself, am a somewhat private person. I don't like attention and prefer to quietly go about my business. But God has given me wonderful people with whom to do life. He has called me to, in appropriate ways, open my heart and mind to each one of these people. For instance, Christ has asked me to share my heart, to open it if you will, to my bride, Christina. I want to do it. I know it is best. Naturally, however, I do not want to or feel the power to obey. But the Lord, the one who obeyed a more difficult calling than God has ever given me, calls me. He wants to help me. As I seek him in prayer and his word, he fills me up to do that which I cannot in my own power. I can happily report that I am much more open than I've ever been, and by God's grace, I will become more so by his power.
Jesus Christ can help you obey. Though difficult, he is with you, calling you, asking you to let him aid you. He has learned obedience, making him the friend for the job. Let him assist you.