Thabiti posted a great post on Trusting in Our Own Ability, here a few snippets:
In 1651 ministers in Scotland were moved to publish an acknowledgement of the sins of the ministry. They’d determined that through neglect of their own Christian lives and ministries they were partly to blame for the problems of Scotland at the time. Bonar’s Words to Winners of Souls includes the confession. Today, a section labeled “Trusting in Our Own Ability” really stirred my heart.
Trusting in Our Own Ability
The ministers confessed to…
Not entertaining that edge of spirit in ministerial duties which we found at the first entry to the ministry. Great neglect of reading, and other preparation; or preparation merely literal and bookish, making an idol of a book, which hindereth communion with God; or presuming on bygone assistance, and praying little. Trusting to gifts, talents, and pains taken for preparation, whereby God is provoked to blast good matter, well ordered and worded. Careless in employing Christ, and drawing virtue out of Him, for enabling us to preach in the Spirit and in power. In praying for assistance we pray more for assistance to the messenger than to the message which we carry, not caring what becomes of the Word, if we be with some measure of assistance carried on in the duty. The matter we bring forth is not seriously recommended to God by prayer, to be quickened to His people. Neglect of prayer after the Word is preached.