Every Wednesday evening, the sound of bells rings out across my village as the local bell-ringers practice for the following Sunday. Although the church is quite small, and the bells quite old, they still make an extraordinary sound. Powerful, purposeful and resonating. Any birds that had previously been perched up on the church tower quickly launch themselves off into the sky. In fact, the only thing that sits up there for the duration is the weather-vane!
I’ve always thought that church bells are a very good way of reminding us all about God. Because if you’ve got something important to share with the world, then you need to shout it out in a powerful, purposeful and resonating way……….across village rooftops, wider communities and on to the farthest ends of the world. Because church bells are very much more than heavy chunks of metal, hung up to make a noise. They remind us of the presence of God in our lives, and the wonderful sense of hope that brings to us all. And they remind us that God is present both in times of joy as well as sadness, -such as weddings and funerals.
I guess that being a Christian is rather like existing in society with your own set of bells. We shouldn’t be timid or embarrassed by our faith, but pass on the message of hope and joy to anyone around us that wants to hear it.
“Blessed…are those who hear the word of God and obey it.” (Luke 11:28)
“He who has ears to hear, let him hear.” (Luke 14:35b)
“Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message and the message is heard through the word of Christ…….Their voice has gone out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world.” (Romans 10:17-18)