Do not judge a minister . . .
Rattles and baubles
(Thomas Brooks, "The Unsearchable Riches of Christ")
Faith is the most useful grace. It
is a Christian's right eye,
without which he cannot see for Christ; it is his right hand,
without which he cannot do for Christ; it is his tongue,
without which he cannot speak for Christ; it is his very
vital spirits, without which he cannot act for Christ.
It is fabled of King Midas, that whatever he touched would
be turned into gold. I am sure that whatever faith touches,
it turns into gold, that is, into our good. If our faith touches
the promises, it turns them into our good; whatever faith
lays its hand upon, it appropriates to itself, and turns it
into the soul's good. If faith looks upon God, it says, "This
God is my God forever and ever, and He shall be my guide
unto death!" When it looks upon Christ, it says, "My Lord
and my God!" When it looks upon the crown of righteousness,
it says, "This crown is laid up for me!"
Faith is . . .
bread to nourish us,
wine to cheer us,
a cordial to strengthen us,
a sword to defend us,
a guide to direct us,
a staff to support us,
a plaster to heal us,
a friend to comfort us, and
a golden key to open heaven unto us.
Faith, of all graces, is the most useful grace to the soul
of man. "Without faith it is impossible to please God."
All those services are lost, wherein faith has not a hand.
You may write 'loss' . . .
upon all the prayers you make, and
upon all the sermons you hear, and
upon all the tears you shed, and
upon all the alms you give,
if all are not managed by a hand of faith.