A tract written by an atheist dramatically changed the life of C.T. Studd, (1860-1931)and his perspective of the short time we have on this earth. It seemed to help him turn from lukewarm Christianity to being on fire for God. After reading the tract, he walked away from great financial wealth and being one of the greatest athletes in Englands history, to become a missionary in China and Africa. What did the tract say?
It said did I firmly believe, as millions say they do, that the knowledge and practice of religion in this life influences destiny in another, religion would mean to me everything. I would cast away all earthly enjoyments as dross, earthly cares as Follies, and earthly thoughts and feelings as vanity. Religion would be my first waking thought, and my last image before sleep sank me into unconsciousness. I should labor in its cause alone. I would take thought for the tomorrow of eternity alone. I would esteem one soul gained for heaven worth a life of suffering. Earthly consequences should never stay my hand, nor seal my lips. Earth, its joys and its griefs, would occupy no moment of my thoughts. I would strive to look upon eternity alone, and on the immortal souls around me, soon to be everlastingly happy or everlastingly miserable. I would go forth to the world and preach it in season and out of season and my text would be, what shall it profit a man if he gain the whole world and lose his own soul?
Mr. Studd said I at once saw that this was truly consistent Christian life. When I looked back upon my own life I saw how inconsistent it had been. I therefore determined that from that time forth my life should be consistent, and I set myself to know what was Gods will for me. But this time I determined not to consult with flesh and blood, but just waiting until God should show me.�
The important question now is what does the tract say to you and me?
We in our local part of Gods world wide church have a lot further to go as individuals to be consistent like we should be, according to the high calling we have in Christ Jesus. We want to be on-fire Christians, to do our part in the great commision of proclaiming the Gospel of Christ to the world and provoking other Christians to do likewise!
History says C.T. Studd lived his motto I want to run a Rescue Shop - within a yard of hell.