We can learn how to live for Jesus from Capt. Ben

Staff Writer
The Destin Log
Capt. Ben Marler — Jesus' servant in Destin. [SPECIAL TO THE LOG]

This is a long story, but worth the read, as it is a brief but touching glimpse into the life of Capt. Ben Marler, a steadfast servant of Jesus.

I met up with Capt. Ben recently at the Sam's parking lot. He wanted to give another contribution to my music ministry so I can get to Nashville to finish up the next gospel CD. He sincerely asked how I was and listened to me. Then he prayed for me. Tears streamed down my face, as God knows what is in my heart, and I felt that he sent Capt. Ben to pray on my behalf.

While visiting with him, he offered to buy me a rotisserie chicken at Sam's because he knows I'm still trying to gain the weight back after being sick. I declined and said that I was OK. But he insisted. So we ventured into Sam's, and when I say "ventured," I mean VENTURED.

It was an uplifting adventure to see him "work" for Jesus. On the way in, he "fished" by handing out "bait" — granola bars with the message "Jesus Loves Me" on it. On walking in the door, immediately he introduced me to a lovely greeter named Marie, who obviously knew who he was, and she asked him to pray for her. Capt. Ben put his hand on her head and prayed for her as she said she needed it. Afterward, as we moved on, I looked back and could see the true, blessed cheerfulness in her smile.

Then we picked up the chicken and some other items that he needed. Suddenly, Capt. Ben spotted two airmen down an aisle and told me how much he loves our servicemen and women, so he "beelined" to them. I followed along and was really excited to see what was going to happen. He gave out the "bait" and began to ask about the one young man's leg. He obviously had an injury, and as the young man explained what happened, Capt. Ben listened patiently. Then he talked about Jesus healing and “Healing the Sick,” a book on healing Capt. Ben recommends, and then asked if he could pray for him. The young man said yes.

So Capt. Ben anointed him with a tiny drop of oil on his forehead and prayed that God would heal him rapidly. Capt. Ben added that if he contacts him on Facebook after he finishes the book (must finish it first), then he would even pay the young man for the cost of the book. The other airman was also injured, and of course Capt. Ben asked about it. There was so much more that they talked about and I was just glad to be blessed to witness it.

After our eventful trip to Sam's, he handed out bait even as we were heading back to our cars. Then Capt. Ben talked a bit more with me before we said goodbye. It seems the time with him was over in a flash.

I drove home in a daze. I got to experience a window of time in Capt. Ben's day. He uses his time here on earth so wisely. Every opportunity he has, he seizes it to spread the Gospel and bless each person in some way. He genuinely loves people and wants to see them come to know Jesus. What a lesson I learned. And I want to pass it on to all of you who read this.

Here's what spending part of a morning with Capt. Ben teaches us:

Use your time wisely.

Bless others every chance you get.

Tell them about Jesus.

Really listen to people.

People are hurting and need someone who cares.

Jesus cares ... and we are His representatives to do the same.

Thank you, Capt. Ben. You are a blessing to me and everyone whose lives you touch.