“Of all men, the minister of Christ is especially called to walk with God. Everything depends on this—his own peace and joy; his own future reward at the coming of the Lord. But especially does our text point to this as the true and sure way of securing the blessing. This is the grand secret of ministerial success. One who walks with God reflects the light of His countenance upon a benighted world; and the closer he walks the more of this light does he reflect. One who walks with God carries in his very air and countenance a sweet serenity and holy joy that diffuses tranquility around. One who walks with God receives and imparts life whithersoever he goes; as it is written, ‘Out of him shall flow rivers of living water.’ He is not merely the world’s light but the world’s fountain—dispensing the water of life on every side, and making barren wastes to blossom as the rose. He waters the world’s wilderness as he moves along his peaceful course. His life is blest; his intercourse is blest; his words are blest; his ministry is blest! Souls are saved—sinners are converted, and many are turned from their iniquity!
“God has of late been teaching us this. He has of late been visiting many parishes of our land with showers of blessing, refreshing them with the outpouring of His Spirit. Our own eyes have seen, our own ears have heard that of which our fathers spake in other days. In this we are called upon greatly to rejoice, and for it to render praise to God. How often have we prayed that God would pour out His Spirit; yea, do we not make it matter of public prayer each Sabbath day that He would do so? And shall we be astonished when He answers us? Shall we be slow of heart to believe it? Shall we be reluctant to acknowledge the gift? When we see many turned from iniquity shall we presume to call that excitement or fanaticism, which, taking it even at the lowest count, bears at least the appearance of a Divine work, and may be hereafter displayed to the eye of the most incredulous, as in very deed a work of God?
“For the acknowledgment of what God has thus been doing in reviving His work, with reference to the difficulties in which we are at present involved; and with a desire to carry forward and extend the work of revival, the last General Assembly of our Church has sent forth an earnest recommendation to all her ministers to hold congregational prayer meetings, to implore the Divine blessing upon our church that her present difficulties may be removed, and ‘that by the outpouring of His Holy Spirit, the means of grace may still be more eminently blest than in the year that is past.’ Following out this recommendation, and stirring up ourselves and our people to fervent prayer and believing intercession, let us go forward to our ministerial and pastoral labors; not merely contented to discharge these with professional exactness, and to fulfill our round of necessary duty, but watching for souls as they must give an account—desiring success, laboring for success, expecting success. Let us give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the Word. Let us walk closely with God, maintaining peaceful and unbroken fellowship with Him as our own, our reconciled Father, and counting it our meat and drink to do His will, and to advance His glory! And as our success is sure, so is our eternal reward—the crown of righteousness which the Lord the righteous Judge will give us at that day, and not to us only, but to all that love His appearing. He that winneth souls is wise—wiser and greater far than the learned and mighty of this world, and surer of what they are striving after—the riches of an incorruptible inheritance, the glory of an immortal name—for ‘they that be wise shall shine as the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars forever and ever.’”
-From the Preaching of Horatius Bonar in 1840 in a sermon entitled “The Faithful Minister Of The New Covenant”.