VIDEO The Story of Two Kens – Come Lord Jesus

[We] shall see His face. Revelation 22:4

In 1951, a red-headed toddler named Ken Beeton fell into the Manning River in Australia. He was eighteen months old. A nine-year-old boy named Ken Gibson was walking along, saw the drowning child, and heroically managed to pull him to safety. 

Nearly seventy years passed, and Beeton, now 71, decided to find out what happened to his rescuer. He tracked down Gibson, now 78, and the two met face to face for a reunion. “I might not have been here without him, so I’m saying thank you,” an emotional Beeton said, to which Gibson smiled and replied, “You’re welcome.”[1]

We’ve been rescued by the Stranger of Galilee who walked past just when we were drowning in our sins. One day we’ll see Him face to face in New Jerusalem and say, “I wouldn’t be here without You, so I’m saying thank You.” 

The Bible says we will see Him face to face (1 Corinthians 13:12). Let’s anticipate the day when we will physically see the face of Christ. What a glorious thought!

Face to face I shall behold Him, far beyond the starry sky; / Face to face in all His glory, I shall see Him by and by! Carrie E. Breck, “Face to Face With Christ My Savior”

[1]Emma Siossian and Anthony Scully, “Emotional Reunion, 70 Years After Ken Beeton Was Saved From Drowning at Taree,” ABC News Australia, May 29, 2020.

Come, Lord Jesus! | Revelation 22

Prayers on La Playa

Let them praise the name of the Lord, for his name alone is exalted. Psalm 148:13

During a trip to celebrate our twenty-fifth anniversary, my husband and I read our Bibles on the beach. As vendors passed and called out the prices of their wares, we thanked each one but didn’t buy anything. One vendor, Fernando, smiled wide at my rejection and insisted we consider buying gifts for friends. After I declined his invitation, Fernando packed up and began walking away . . . still grinning. “I pray God will bless your day,” I said.

Fernando turned toward me and said, “He has! Jesus changed my life.” Fernando knelt between our chairs. “I feel His presence here.” He then shared how God had delivered him from drug and alcohol abuse more than fourteen years earlier.

My tears flowed as he recited entire poems from the book of Psalms and prayed for us. Together, we praised God and rejoiced in His presence . . . on la playa.

Psalm 148 is a prayer of praise. The psalmist encourages all of creation to “praise the name of the Lord, for at his command [everything was] created” (v. 5), “for his name alone is exalted; his splendor is above the earth and the heavens” (v. 13).

Though God invites us to bring our needs before Him and trust He hears and cares for us, He also delights in prayers of grateful praise wherever we are. Even on the beach.

By:  Xochitl Dixon

Reflect & Pray

What will you praise God for today? How has He inspired you to praise Him after hearing someone else’s story?

Help me praise You with every breath You’ve given me, God.

How to Know You’re Saved

1 John 5:9-13

The most important issue we must settle in this life is our eternal destiny. Throughout history, local churches have been composed of both believers and unbelievers, and it’s often difficult to tell the difference. That’s why John wrote his first letter. He wanted to assure the true Christians of their salvation and warn those who professed belief but lacked saving faith.

John gives a fourfold test describing the beliefs and practices of genuine believers:

  1. Right understanding of Christ and salvation (1 John 2:18-27). To be saved, we must have the true gospel and the only Savior, as described in God’s Word.
  2. Right attitude toward sin (1 John 1:5-10, 1 John 2:1-2). True believers hate their sin and are quick to confess and turn from it.
  3. Right practice of obedience (1 John 2:3-6). God’s commands are not burdensome to those who belong to Christ. Although they fail at times, the overall direction of their life is one of obedience.
  4. Right relationship with God’s people (1 John 2:7-11). Christ produces within His true followers a love for fellow believers, demonstrated by a desire to be with them.

If you have doubts about your salvation, reading the book of 1 John will help you settle the issue.

Be Rooted and Built Up

“Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.” (Colossians 2:7)

The Christian walk must be “rooted” and “built up” to endure. The word picture goes back to the parable of the sower. “Some [seeds] fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth: And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away….the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it; Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended” (Matthew 13:5-6, 20-21).

According to the Lord of the harvest, some will respond “with joy” to the gospel message, but without any root they will not last in either their joy or their Christian testimony— they “fall away” (Luke 8:13). Just what is involved in a “root” that stabilizes and provides nourishment for the seed of the gospel in the human heart?

Fervent love for God’s Word and for the work of the ministry is surely a foundational element—“being rooted and grounded in love, [we] may be able to comprehend…the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ which passeth knowledge” (Ephesians 3:17-19).

The root also requires being “stablished in the faith”—all the “counsel of God” (Acts 20:27). “Stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle” (2 Thessalonians 2:15). These factors should make us to “be stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord” (1 Corinthians 15:58). With good roots, we will “build up,” being affirmed in the faith, increasing in that walk with real thanksgiving. HMM III

Need Crowds at Any Price?

As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one…. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. —Romans 3:10, 12

The crowds-at-any-price mania has taken a firm grip on American Christianity and is the motivating power back of a shockingly high percentage of all religious activity….

Our constant effort should be to reach as many persons as possible with the Christian message, and for that reason numbers are critically important. But our first responsibility is not to make converts but to uphold the honor of God in a world given over to the glory of fallen man. No matter how many persons we touch with the gospel we have failed unless, along with the message of invitation, we have boldly declared the exceeding sinfulness of man and the transcendent holiness of the Most High God. They who degrade or compromise the truth in order to reach larger numbers, dishonor God and deeply injure the souls of men.

The temptation to modify the teachings of Christ with the hope that larger numbers may “accept” Him is cruelly strong in this day of speed, size, noise and crowds. But if we know what is good for us, we’ll resist it with every power at our command.   SIZ117-119

Lord, give me a deep, unshakable commitment “to uphold the honor of God in a world given over to the glory of fallen men”whether I achieve crowds and success or not. Amen.

No Truth apart from the Spirit

Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above. —John 19:11

Everywhere…we find persons who are Bible-taught but not Spirit-taught. They conceive truth to be something which they can grasp with the mind.

If a man holds to the fundamentals of the Christian faith he is thought to possess divine truth. But it does not follow. There is no truth apart from the Spirit.

The most brilliant intellect may be imbecilic when confronted with the mysteries of God. For a man to understand revealed truth requires an act of God equal to the original act which inspired the text.

“Except it were given thee from above” (John 19:11). Here is the other side of the truth; here is hope for all, for these words do certainly mean that there is such a thing as a gift of knowing, a gift that comes from heaven. POM077

It is blessed to be sanctified, and even more blessed to be intelligently sanctified. Happy is the man who enjoys the blessing of perfect love in connection with an informed mind, experienced head and sound judgment. SAN167

I Come to Thee with Quiet Mind

Psalm 46:10

O Love, revealed on earth in Christ,

In blindness once I sacrificed

Thy gifts for dross; I could not see,

But Jesus brings me sight of Thee.

I come to Thee with quiet mind,

Thyself to know, Thy will to find;

In Jesus’ steps my steps must be,

I follow Him to follow Thee.

O Love, invisible before,

I see Thee now, desire Thee more;

When Jesus speaks Thy word is clear;

I search His face and find Thee near.

O Love, forever claim my eyes!

Thy beauty be my chosen prize;

I cast my load on timeless grace

That my free soul may run the race.

Catherine Baird, The Salvation Army Songbook