The apostle Paul was and is a great example of the “preacher.”
After hearing of the establishment of the church at Colosse, his response, as recorded in The Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Colossians, was not to immediately begin making preparations for a series of sermons to be delivered, but rather his focus was on the spiritual needs of the body of Christ in order to further stabilize them and increase their knowledge and discernment of the things of God.
His first response was to get a “word” from God.
In Colossians 1, we see that the “word” he received began with a message of grace and peace. His response in seeking God continued as he did not cease to pray.
Paul’s prayers revealed his desire for the Colossians — that they might be filled with the knowledge of [God’s] will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; and [t]hat [they] might walk worthy of the Lord.
Paul obviously saw his main duty toward men as instructional.
He followed Christ’s example in that Christ set about training and developing disciples who would then take the gospel message to the world.
Paul was seeking to build saintly men who would further seek to train saintly men who would continue the pattern.
Paul’s letter to the Colossians is filled with instruction born not from Paul’s mind but from the mind of God. It was Paul’s prayer life that brought forth God’s Word that was revealed to the saints at Colosse.
The “preacher” is first and foremost to be a man of prayer.
His communication with God brings forth the “word” from God that is needful for his congregation, for it is God and God alone who knows what is in the heart of men, what message is needed to facilitate change desired by God, and Who is the only One that can give the wisdom and discernment needed to deliver that message.
When the “preacher” mounts the pulpit, his message conveys whether or not he has been in communication with God. In other words, a strong prayer life reveals the true “preacher.”
Paul’s example as a great man of prayer is the example of the “preacher” that is needful today.
Whereunto I also labour, striving according to his working, which worketh in me mightily. Colossians 1:29