True gospel ministers are just buckets and pipes.
Imagine you are traveling through a desert and your water runs out. Soon your lips are cracked, your mouth is dry, your throat is parched, your stomach is in knots, and your skin is blistered – you are dehydrated and dying. If you see a bucket lying in the sand, or a pipe lying horizontally in the sand you do not get excited about them, no matter how pretty they may be. But if the bucket is attached to a rope that is attached to a well, or if that pipe is standing out of the sand vertically with a faucet on top then you might begin to get excited. And as you investigate to find that the well is indeed full of clean, clear, cool water then you celebrate. Your joy wouldn’t terminate on the bucket or the pipe, but climax in the drinking of the water.
Only the insane would just stare at the bucket or pipe rest content. Spiritually we are insane. Sin is an insanity; it makes no sense. We are more enamored with the plate than the feast of Christ. We judge the meal by the plate, rather than the plate by the meal. We pass by heavenly delicacies to gorge ourselves on earthly refuse because of the plate.
Demand water from pipes or deem them useless. Better a cracked pipe that preaches Christ crucified than a pretty pipe that pumps the poison of performance.
I am a pipe that drinks what I flow with. I hope by God’s grace that when I present the feast of Christ, I have already richly dined on the meal, and plan to further do so even in the act of preaching. The grace I preach is the grace I need. I hope to come not just having snacked or licked my fingers in preparing the feast, but already overstuffed, and seeking more. We cannot be gluttonous when feasting on Christ; and there is always more bread and wine.
Pray for me that the flow not cease. The fountain is inexhaustible and infinite. I am sinful, desperately needing the water that is to flow through me. I am not strong, but the fountain is full of strengthening grace.