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Daily Encounter: A Week-day Devotional by Richard (Dick) Innes of ACTS International.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Be Mindful and Remember

"Be careful that you do not forget the Lord."1

Beverly Muffin stood "ten feet (three meters) tall" when she saw her daughter, Susan (name changed) step from the airplane dressed immaculately in her U.S. Navy whites. Susan had just returned from boot camp training. How proud Beverly was of her daughter.

Three generations of Beverly's family have served in the military. She tells how, as a small girl, she read a telegram from World War II that her grandmother kept in her Bible. The telegram was sent to tell her that one of her sons had been shot down, was missing in action, and presumed dead.

Beverly also shared with us a valuable lesson her Navy daughter taught her when she told her mother that every time she saw a service person in uniform, she ought to pray. When Beverly asked why, Susan replied, "Because that person is willing to die to protect the ground you're standing on!"

War in any man's language is a tragedy. As Rear Admiral A. Byron Holderby, Jr., a former U.S. Navy Chief of Chaplains, said, "Because there is evil in the world, we will always need a military."

As we live next door to Camp Pendleton Marine Base here in California, we often see Marines. Whenever I see any (even if they are not in uniform as I recognize so many by their very short hair), or any other military personnel, and have the opportunity, I stop and thank them for their service and let them know they are greatly appreciated. All of us who live in free countries need to always be thankful for the thousands of service men and woman who risk their lives
and for the many who made the supreme sacrifice by giving their life—to protect the land that you and I stand on.

Let us never forget their sacrifice. And may we never forget the supreme sacrifice that Jesus, the Son of God, made when He gave His life to save us from a hellish, lost eternity. And whether we live in a free country or otherwise, every one of us is equal in the sight of God, and all are greatly loved by God so every one of us can equally ask for and receive His forgiveness and gift of eternal life.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, those of us who live in a free country express our deepest gratitude for all who gave their lives to pay for our freedom. And we pray for our brothers and sisters who have no religious freedom, or their land is being ravaged by war, who have been forced to become a refugee, or are suffering under terrible bondage. May they find freedom in their heart by knowing and loving You as their personal Lord and Savior. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Deuteronomy 6:12 (NIV).


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