• Mark Alan Williams

Some want to live within the sound of church or chapel bell

I want to run a rescue shop within a yard of hell. C. T. Studd

To live within the sound of church or chapel bell was not enough for Charles Thomas (C.T.)

Studd, (1860-1931), an English missionary to China, India, and Africa. C. T. Studd was born into privilege and wealth, but God had other plans for his life. His father, Edward, was converted after hearing the famous American evangelist Dwight L. Moody speak. Then subsequently, C. T. and his brothers were also converted.


But, 6 years after C. T.’s conversion, he realized that his commitment to the Lord was

lacking and he decided to give everything up, and seek God’s will. He wisely said, "I

know that cricket would not last, and honour would not last, and nothing in this world

would last, but it was worthwhile living for the world to come."


This is a guest post by Beth Harris. She is a wife, mother, Bible study leader and volunteer editor for markalanwilliams.net.


I currently live within the sound of church bells and I grew up within the sound of them as well. I think they are beautiful, but, it wasn’t the sound of church bells that brought me to Jesus Christ. It was the witness of so many authentic Christians, and it was hearing the message of the Gospel and my response to it that saved me. I didn’t need to hear bells, I needed to hear the Gospel and I did at a church service where a pastor explained Christ’s death, resurrection and transforming power to save. And then it took my softened heart to believe and accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior.


The Gospel message is the sound that we should want to hear, more than the sound of church bells, because it’s the Gospel that transforms and saves lives. And in response to what Jesus Christ has done, I am motivated to live for Him, volunteer at my church, and serve with ministries and organizations; that are passionate about saving souls and discipleship.


How many people are content to live within the sound of church or chapel bell, but never step foot inside of a church to hear the Gospel message. Or, how many are content to live within the sound of church bells and attend, but never take the Gospel to heart or share Jesus Christ with others.


They haven’t counted the cost of discipleship, but C. T. Studd did and he chose a life of hardship and sacrifice, because of His commitment to Jesus Christ.


And when others questioned him about the decisions he was making for the sake of the Gospel, he could only reply with this quote:


If Jesus Christ be God and died for me, then no sacrifice can be too great for me to make for Him.” –C. T. Studd

Although salvation through Jesus Christ is a free gift from God given to us by grace (Ephesians 2:8-9), it was not without cost to Him.


To be a disciple of Jesus Christ, one must realize the cost of His sacrifice and respond with a commitment to follow Him wholeheartedly; without reservation and whatever the cost.


Additionally, we should want more than to live within the sound of church bells, and be actively involved in helping to fulfill Jesus’ “Great Commission”. To do so we have to daily surrender ourselves to Him. As a result, we give up our own way of living and submit to His will and rule in our lives.


  • Romans 12:1 says, “And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice--the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him.” (NLT)

  • Mark 8:34-37 says, “Then, calling the crowd to join his disciples, he said, "If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will save it. And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?” (NLT)

Great missionaries like C. T. Studd, Hudson Taylor, Jim Elliot and so many more were not

content to merely live within the sound of church bells. They gave their lives, and left their

homes and families, to be used by the Lord to spread the Gospel.


We also shouldn’t be content to just live within the sound of church bells. We like them, should be passionate about spreading the Gospel; and endure hardship and danger if necessary, so people would be rescued from going to hell. If we can’t, then we should at least support the work of missionaries prayerfully and financially.


As Christians, we can follow in the steps of these great men of faith, by surrendering our lives to the Lord Jesus Christ, seeking His will, and living by faith and trusting in Him.


John 12:24-26 says, “I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat is planted in the soil and dies, it remains alone. But its death will produce many new kernels—a plentiful harvest of new lives. 25  Those who love their life in this world will lose it. Those who care nothing for their life in this world will keep it for eternity. 26  Anyone who wants to serve me must follow me, because my servants must be where I am. And the Father will honor anyone who serves me.” (NLT)


This famous quote from the poem, “Only One Life, Twill Soon Be Past” by C.T Studd, is a sober reminder of the brevity of life and that only what’s done for Christ has eternal value.


Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last. –C. T. Studd

Have you surrendered your life to Christ?


Please click here if you would like to accept Christ as your personal Lord and Savior now and

read more about the next steps that you can take to grow spiritually in your new faith.


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