FIGHTING FOR THE CHILDREN
Kirk Cameron isn’t afraid to step into battle when it comes to fighting for our children. With events like "See You at the Library" and BRAVE Story Hours, he is teaching children biblical values. In his latest children's book, "The Fox, the Fair, and the Invention Scare," which is the ninth book in the third Saga of BRAVE’s Freedom Island series, Kirk is giving families hope with a timely message of unity and compassion, especially in a world filled with division.
Within the pages, you’ll read about a young fox named Asher whose family has been disputing with a family of giraffes for years. When Asher, the Fox, and his peer and enemy, Stewart the Giraffe, come face-to-face at the town invention fair to compete, an accident causes both of their inventions to break. Scrambling to fix them before judging, Asher knows what Stewart’s invention needs, but he’s faced with the decision to help his enemy or watch him fail. He makes a courageous decision that changes the course of each family's hatred for one another for generations to come.
The idea for this book came from a personal experience Kirk witnessed while attending a “Restore America” rally. The audience heard from an older man and his wife about their gut-wrenching story of losing their teenage son who was shot and murdered by another young man in a gang. Their faith in God was the only thing that helped them survive the heartbreak. When the couple introduced a 20-year-old man to the crowd, he explained how, years ago, he got caught up in the wrong crowd, joined a gang, committed a violent crime, and was sent to jail. He said that one day, he was visited by this couple, only to find out they were the parents of the young man he murdered. They spoke to him about God‘s love, mercy, and forgiveness and told him that they forgave him. When he was released from prison, they adopted him.
ADVENTURES WITH IGGY AND MR. KIRK
Kirk and former Disney mom, actress Leigh Allyn Baker, are teaming up to create a children’s television show called Adventures with Iggy and Mr. Kirk. Imagine a live-action TV show that teaches solid morals, like a modernized Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood with high-energy hilarious dialog, animated stories, new surprise guest stars, and a puppet iguana co-star. Rather than focusing on confusing children with progressive ideas and themes of sexuality, this show is committed to teaching children the traditional and biblical values that will withstand time and build strong character for generations to come. This was a welcoming concept for the show's co-star Leigh Allyn Baker as she exited Disney and began speaking out about her intentions to align her work in entertainment with her values as a Christian just like Kirk when he starred in Growing Pains. The show is currently in production and set to air in August.
Kirk was not raised in a church-going home and described himself as an atheist from a very young age. When he was 14, Kirk had been working in the entertainment business for a few years and landed the role of Mike Seaver on Growing Pains in 1985. Within a few years, it was a hit show on ABC. (On the show, Mike eventually had a girlfriend named Kate MacDonald, played by Chelsea Noble, Kirk’s future wife!) Soon Kirk had everything he could want and as much money as he wanted to spend. He became a teen heartthrob, appearing on the covers of teen magazines, and was so convinced there was no God that he laughed at those who said there was.
All that changed one afternoon when he went to church and heard the Gospel for the first time. Kirk sat in the back of the church feeling very guilty. His heart was swelling with the hope that a God in heaven saw his sinful heart and would take the punishment for him, forgive him, and welcome him back into a right relationship with Him. A month later, Kirk, then 17, was sitting in his sports car and asked the Lord into his heart. He told a friend who was a Christian. That friend gave him a Bible which Kirk began to read. Kirk went on to star in many films but has since left mainstream film and television. He continues to work in faith-based productions.
To purchase Kirk's book, The Fox, The Fair, and the Invention Scare go to www.BraveBooks.us, and to watch Adventures with Iggy and Mr. Kirk, please visit: www.WatchBrave.com.
In the spring of 2023, Nancy Bartke developed a strange feeling in her right hand that extended into her arm. “It actually felt like somebody had turned on electrical current in my right arm,” she says. “It was pain with pins and needles, like vibrating.”
“She had some limited mobility, not like she, you know, lost all feeling, but it was just difficult for her to do things with her arm, with her hand,” her husband George adds. “She had some issues with holding on to things.”
For six months, daily life was a challenge due to the pain. “It got in the way of my daily activities, being able to do things comfortably, you know. I was feeling it all the time. It was just--probably on a scale of one to 10, probably a nine or a 10.”
She sought medical care from several physicians and specialists—all to no avail. “She went to her primary,” George adds. “She even talked to our chiropractor about it. And they sent her to another specialist. And they were going to send her to a neurologist. But there was just never any resolve from it.”
Nancy and George prayed for healing, yet she got no relief. “We would constantly pray about it,” George says. “He doesn't always answer our prayers when we want them, but He does answer our prayers. That's without a doubt.”
Her doctors ran more tests, but they still couldn’t pinpoint the source of the problem-- or prescribe a treatment. “I thought maybe it was a pinched nerve or something like that, but it just kept getting worse,” she says.
On Sept 4, 2023, Nancy settled in to watch her favorite program: The 700 Club. “I love the prayer time. I usually just--I enter in, and I pray for the people they're praying for.” She almost couldn’t believe it when she heard Gordon say, “Someone else with pins and needles pain in your right hand and right arm, God is healing you.”
“Somebody’s got pain, like pins and needles in their right arm,’” Nancy recalls. “I was like, ‘That’s me!’ It went away! The next day, it wasn't back. It was still gone.”
“I was actually at work,” says George. “She calls me up and tells me about it, and of course I'm pretty excited about it. And I just couldn't wait to get home.”
“I actually waited about a week,” says Nancy, “and I finally said, ‘I'm going to call 700 Club and let them know.”
Today, Nancy has full movement of her arm and hand and has experienced no more pain. She and George are thankful to God for His faithfulness.
“She hasn't had any pain. She hasn't had any tingling,” George adds. “It's just like she was normal. It's just been fantastic.”
“My God is faithful. He works and He heals. I've always known that He's a healer, but this was, you know, specific to me and it was so specific about my right arm and exactly what I was feeling there,” Nancy says. “I just--it's hard to imagine that God could give a Word to a person who speaks out what I'm actually going through, and then God heals it…but He does!”
Lourdes is a single mother living with her two children in a small community in Guatemala. Her main source of water is a shallow, open well that was dug by hand. Due to its high mineral content that water is not suitable for human consumption. Lourdes says, "The water in the well is yellow and smells like rust," "You can't drink it because mud and rocks comes out too."
Part of the year, Lourdes collects rainwater from her roof for drinking. Tests revealed that that water is filled with bacteria and dangerous to drink too. But they drink it anyway. Finally, during dry season, they walk 30 minutes where they get water on private property that they don’t have permission to use. 3-year-old Camila says that water tastes funny too, stating, "I don't like that water."
Lourdes explains, "My daughter said when she drinks the pipe water, she doesn't like it because it gives her stomachache."
When her children fall ill, the only “medicine” Lourdes can afford is lemon water to soothe their pain. Lourdes says, "I tell my children that it is going to rain soon, and we are going to have water to drink. I feel sad because I can't give them clean water to drink.”
Then Operation Blessing came and dug a deep well with a pump that fills a 4,000-gallon tank. That water is purified and is delivered to more than 80 families in the community - including Lourdes, who gratefully shares, "I am so grateful to Operation Blessing for giving my children clean water. It is a gift that I will never forget."
“I had a chip on my shoulder. I was taught that you didn't let anybody push you around. If you win a fight, people praise you for it.” Fighting, drugs, and alcohol-- things Josh Timms picked up from his parents: two teenagers living in poverty and addiction. For Josh, a dropout and crack addict by age fifteen, the fighting was about respect and attention. “The people I looked up to were tough guys. I wanted to be somebody you didn't mess with I was real arrogant, cocky.”
As for the drugs….“I didn't like Josh. I didn't wanna deal with any of the hurt or pain I had caused or that I had myself. I just wanted to drown it out.”
Addiction, crime, and violence would become a way of life for Josh for years to come. His anger drove him; defined him. Even spending almost two years in prison for armed robbery and numerous assault charges seemed to have no effect on him. “Prison for me was like training or something. That's the way I looked at it. Like, I'm not ever gonna be anything anyway. I honestly thought I'd either get killed or I'd spend the rest of my life in jail.”
Six months after his release from his first prison term, Josh was arrested again for assault and stealing cars. That same morning, he got some news from his girlfriend, April, that would soften even his hardened heart. “When she told me that she was pregnant with my daughter I was happy. Even though it was like, my life is an absolute mess, I was still happy. I didn't fully grasp it.”
Sitting in prison for a year and a half, Josh began to think about his life and his child’s future. “I wanted to come home and I wanted to be a dad. Now, I didn't know how to be one, I didn't really know what that meant, but I wanted to try.”
So, when Josh got out of prison, he married April and started working construction. For five years, he tried to go straight and be a good husband and father. He always fell short. He and April fought constantly.
“It was really hard for us to get along because he wanted it his way, and I wanted it my way and neither way went together,” April recalls. “There was no compromising.”
“I was really sad about the way I was,” Josh remembers. “I wasn't happy. I didn't wanna be the way I was. I just didn't know how to get out of it. I had no power over it. I was willing myself to quit doing drugs, willing myself to quit having the attitude and the temper and all that stuff, but it didn't work.”
Then, one day while doing drugs with a friend, Josh felt a darkness he couldn’t shake. “It was like, the weight of everything in my life just kind of came down on me. The way I was as a person, as a friend, as a father, as a husband--the guilt of my life came down on me.”
Josh went home, hoping the feeling would go away after a good night’s sleep. The next morning, it was still there. “I didn't hear a voice audibly, but I felt it, inside. And it was God,” Josh remembers. "And He told me, ‘You're going die and go to hell for the way you lived.' And in that moment, I thought, 'I'm dying, going to hell right now.' And in the same instant, just as clear as a bell, He said, ‘But you don't have to.’”
Josh remembered his grandma and others talking to him about Jesus through the years. “It don't matter about how tough you are. It don't matter about how bad you are. It don't matter about how much money you have. None of that's gonna matter. Like, the only thing that'll matter is your relationship with the Lord Jesus. And at that point, I just broke down. And I started praying. I don't remember what I said as far as my prayer, like word for word, but I just asked God to forgive me. I put my faith in Christ that morning and immediately the whole dread, all of that stuff, just left me. And I feel this weight lifted. I wasn't angry anymore. God took that from me.”
At first, April wasn’t convinced he had changed. She had heard it before. Then, Josh told her he wanted to go to church. “I knew then, like, this is--he's serious,” April recalls. “His demeanor, his attitude, our conversation, just everything about him was different. He just seemed more gentle immediately.”
That Sunday, at the end of the service, they went down to the altar together. April remembers that day. "That's when I prayed and said, ‘Lord, I know that I really messed up and I don't wanna live like this anymore, and I really want to commit my life to you.’ And so, from there, God just really changed our lives. We would not be married today if we had not gotten saved. There's no way.”
“I wasn't free before; I was a slave,” says Josh. “I was a slave to getting drunk. I was a slave to sin. I was a slave to getting high. I was a slave to, you know, maintaining a persona. I was a slave to that. And when God stepped in, He released me from all that. He broke all those chains for me. He freed me from that desire. He made me free.”
Now, Josh can be the man he never thought he could be. Today, a father of three, he pastors a church in the same town he used to terrorize. He says he’s amazed at what Christ did in his life and his family’s. “If you're still here, you're not too far gone. You still got breath and you still got a chance. God's there. If you'll call on the Lord, He'll save you.”
CBN’s impact around the world
Daily prayers for people across the country
CBN’s prayer team prayed with over 1.2 million callers in 2022 alone, while also praying with people through email, social media channels, live chat on the website, and written correspondence.
Highlighting testimonies of God’s faithfulness
Vida Dura or “Hard Life” stories are sourced throughout Latin America and produced in Spanish to reach a region with testimonies of people who hit rock bottom and turn to God for change. CBN has a prayer center in Latin America to support people through prayer and faith resources.
Serving in the wake of natural disasters
CBN's Operation Blessing was on the ground quickly in the wake of the devastating earthquakes in Turkey, providing much-needed food, relief supplies, and medical aid. After large-scale natural disasters, Operation Blessing strives to be the first to arrive, and the last to leave, tending to the needs long after the news cameras leave.
Ukraine and Poland
For 30 years, CBN has been serving the people of Ukraine
Through CBN’s Orphan’s Promise and Operation Blessing, we were able to quickly provide valuable resources soon after the conflict began, and we continue to support Ukrainian refugees.
Projected 135 million* watched a CBN program in 2022
CBN partners are reaching children around the world with the Gospel of Jesus through Superbook, a Bible-based animation series. In 2022 alone, children in 139 countries watched at least one episode of Superbook.
Bible Reading for the Day
Read or listen to today's Old and New Testament Bible readings. Each day is portioned to give the entire Bible to you in a year. Start anytime. Scroll forward or backward if you miss any days or want to get ahead.