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  • Writer's pictureW. Austin Gardner

Plain Speaking by C. T. Studd

An instance of the way he started a talk to men was the following at a business men’s luncheon:

Gentlemen, you’ve had a rich dinner, you will be ready for plain speaking. I am not going to tickle you with a pulpit or academic display of language. I shall speak in ordinary language, in that which we are all accustomed to use when engaged in the real battle of life or in heart to heart talking.

I once had another religion, mincing, lisping, bated breath, proper, hunting the Bible for hidden truths, but no obedience, no sacrifice. Then came the change. The real thing came before me. Soft speech became crude salt. The parlour game with the nurses became real cricket on the public ground. Words became deeds.

The commands of Christ became not merely Sunday recitations, but battle calls to be obeyed, unless one would lose one’s self-respect and manhood. Assent to creed was born again into decisive action of obedience. Orthodoxy became reality.

Instead of saying ‘Lord, Lord,’ in a most reverent voice many times and yet continuing deaf to the simplest commandments, I began to look upon God as really my Father and to rely upon Him as a real Father and to trust Him as such.

Instead of talking about fellowship, I enjoyed it. Instead of being unnatural and constrained, I became natural and unconventional. I talked of God and Jesus Christ as Real Living Personal Friends and Relations.

They have never chided me for it. If a man is willing to obey and sacrifice, he soon learns what is the blessed reality of the fellowship of God’s Son Jesus Christ—familiar and social intercourse. In other words I dropped cant and ceremony and became a Christian. Reverence, I observe in the New Testament, is not apparent politeness and manifest disobedience, but filial or childlike obedience, trust, and love.”

Norman Grubb, C T Studd

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