Roll Call in Heaven
Referring to Heaven God's Word says, "On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it. Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb's [Jesus Christ's] book of life."1
Recently Joy and I attended a Memorial Service on the Marine Base at Camp Pendleton here in Southern California. Our town is next door to Camp Pendleton, and our church is very involved with the Engineer Corps. Among a variety of ways we support the marines, whenever a contingent is sent overseas, our church is given the name of each marine so members can choose one of the marines to be a prayer partner for him.
Sadly, one of the marines for whom Joy and I were prayer partners was killed in action earlier this year. This is why we attended the Memorial Service in his honor.
It was an extremely moving ceremony. There were quite a few marines who took part in the service and, during Roll Call, their names were called out one at a time by the Officer in charge. Each marine loudly answered "present" when his name was called. When the name of "our" marine, Lance Corporal Alejandro Yazzie, was called, there was no answer. The Officer called his name louder … still no answer. A third time his name was called—very loud this time. Dead silence followed! It was so sad that Joy and I cried. Family members and other marines cried too. Lance Corporal Yazzie had died serving his country.
After the ceremony I couldn't help but think about the time when it will be "Roll Call in Heaven." Imagine, if you can, if when the name of a loved one is called and there is no response? What if God calls his/her name a second time … and a third time … and still there is no answer? The sound of silence will be deafening … and devastating.
The question we all need to face is this: at the Roll Call in Heaven when your name is called, will you be there to answer? Also, we need to think of those of our loved ones whose names will not be called and do something about it now. *
As today's Scripture vividly reminds us, only those whose names are written in the Lamb's [Jesus Christ's] book of life will be there to answer, "Present."
To make absolute certain that your name is written in the book of life, please read the article, "How to Be Sure You're a Real Christian," at: http://tinyurl.com/real-christian. Be sure to accept Jesus Christ as your Savior so that when the roll is called in Heaven, you will be able to answer with confidence, "PRESENT."
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank you that you gave your Son, Jesus, to die on the cross in my place to pay the penalty for all my sins so that I can be freely forgiven and receive your gift of eternal life, and in so doing, have my name written in your book of life. Because of your forgiveness I can know with assurance that when the roll is called in Heaven I'll be there. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."
1. Revelation 21:25-27 (NIV)
*Note: To help loved ones be able to answer "Present" when their names are called at the "Roll Call in Heaven" see helps at: www.actsweb.org/people_power02.php.