Pastoral and preaching work in balance bring the call of Jesus in the Scriptures to the life situations of his disciples.
In doing so they maintain the true emphasis of that calling being one in which following him brings his power and presence into our circumstances; rather than lapsing into a sentimental salve that seeks to numb them with vague assurances of their capacities to improve their own lot.
It seems to me that a large part of the troubles and mistakes of our pastoral life come from our having too high an estimate of men’s present condition and too low an estimate of their possibility. If this be true, then what we need to make us better pastors is more of the Gospel which reveals at once man’s imperfect condition and his infinite hope, Jesus was the perfect pastor in the way in which He showed men what they were and what they might become. He never deceived and never discouraged them. The contact with His perfect humanity brought them at once shame and hope. And when He comes near to us now, when His spirit does His appointed work of taking Him and showing Him to us, the same power, combined of shame and hope, comes into our lives. Let that be the model of our pastorship.
Phillips Brooks, The Joy Of Preaching, Kregel Classics, 1989, pg. 73.