Relentless Fervor…

“Don’t go into your study to prepare a sermon.  That’s all nonsense.  Go into your study to go to God and get so fiery that your tongue is like a burning coal and you’ve got to speak.”

“I have searched into my life and do not know of anything else left that I can sacrifice to the Lord Jesus.

“Some wish to live within the sound of church or chapel bell, I want to run a rescue shop within a yard of hell.”

These are three amazing lines I took away from the life of C.T. Studd in the biography that his son-in-law wrote, “C.T. Studd: Cricketer & Pioneer”.  What an amazing story of the provision and faithfulness of God to accomplish the purpose of His Word through His work in the early 20th century.  Studd was a man that every man should model after.  He knew one thing and one thing alone: to serve King Jesus with all of his life.  And that he did.  The results of that singular passion were thousands of Chinese, Indians, and Africans coming to faith, hundreds of churches planted, countless disciples developed, and some thousands of missionaries inspired to take to the field behind him.  He started a fire across the world that conquered darkness and brought the light of Christ to unreached peoples.  He made pastors out of cannibals.  He made spiritual warriors out of the wild.  By the end of his life he lay completely spent – literally with nothing left to give.

He forsook everything for Christ.  And in return he gained an eternal reward beyond imagination.  Reading about a life like his stirs the depths of me.  There was a time during my teens that I would have read this book and promptly gotten on a plane without looking back.  I would have taken to the field without deputation and without provision and I would have loved it.  My heart must be colder now.  It must believe less.  I read this story and feel the pull to do what Studd did.  But I sit here still and think, “Yeah, but…”  Why the difference?  Why the doubt?

It could very well be that I am not called to go right now.  Actually I’m almost positive that is the answer.  There was a phase of my life not terribly long ago that prevented me from going back to the field.  (And when I say field, I mean foreign, overseas missions work)  Now I could go again, if my wife was also called in unity to the same calling.  I think that I am meant to stay here for a time though and train.  My desire to start seminary soon is very strong.  That can’t be for no reason.  And I am building the spiritual and practical foundations for my marriage.  We’re ridding ourselves of debt.  There are many good reasons to sit tight for a season.  Only God knows what He is preparing us for.

Regardless, there will probably always be a longing in my heart to be like Studd.  To abandon all earthly concerns and treasures for the sake of souls around this globe will never cease to be a glad thought in my spirit.  I hope that one day I can be used like this.  Until then I know that I must walk with the Lord the way Studd did.  He devoted himself to knowing God’s Word and to communing with the Father every day, all day.


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