“I’m just a Gideon at the end of the day. I pinch myself thinking about the seat I’m sitting in currently,” said Kevin Beal, newly elected international president of The Gideons International. Yet, there is much more to his story. Kevin has been a Gideon for over 20 years now—a calling he never saw coming but one that has impacted his spiritual growth, family life, and his career as a businessman.

Highs and Lows

Kevin, the youngest of four children, was born in the small town of Anniston, Alabama. His father was an electrician who Kevin describes as, “A good, moral man who would never have wronged a person.” His parents were Christians but were never really active in church. However, Kevin distinctly remembers one night at a revival as a ten-year-old boy. The evangelist’s words pierced his impressionable heart. “The conviction at the revival followed me home, where my mom prayed with me as I received Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior.”

“The conviction at the revival followed me home, where my mom prayed with me as I received Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior.”

The family moved to Centre, Alabama, while Kevin was in high school because his father always wanted to live near the lake. Things soon began to unravel for Kevin. His parent’s marriage was struggling, and he began to make poor decisions.

By the time Kevin had enrolled at Gadsden State Community College, he had walked away from his faith and was drinking and partying regularly. “Several instances were bad, but one night stands out. I was caught driving under the influence and spent a few hours in jail,” recalls Kevin. “I got home early that next morning and had to tell my mom.” Kevin was shocked and confused when his mom replied, “It’s my fault.” She had been praying for quite some time God would get ahold of him. Kevin had hit rock bottom, and now the Lord had his attention—precisely what his mother prayed would happen.

Soon after, Kevin embarked on a fresh start. While working as a technician going back and forth between Atlanta and Huntsville, something incredible took place. He met a young lady named Aimee in Huntsville, and there was an instant spark between the two. They began to date and quickly fell in love. The couple knew they were going to get married, but they agreed to date for a year. The wedding bells rang in the summer of 1994 and are still ringing over two decades later.

After a few moves, the Beals settled in Aimee’s hometown of Hartselle, Alabama. The move was simple—it was close to family and a great community to raise kids. Kevin once told his children, Grant and Jessica, “You won’t be able to do anything here without me knowing. Whatever you do will beat you home.” Kevin continued in the telecommunications field, eventually becoming a service project manager and then an operations manager.

A Life-Changing Ministry

Kevin and Aimee were happily married and serving the Lord at their church, New Center Baptist. Yet, Kevin still had a deep desire to more effectively build the Kingdom. Little did he know how God was preparing him. One Sunday evening, a Gideon named Brad spoke at their church. Kevin was fascinated by what he heard and couldn’t wait to learn more. Brad invited him to a Gideon prayer breakfast to discover more about The Gideons. Kevin was blown away. “When you see the banker, doctor, and insurance agent hit their knees in prayer—this is next level. I desired to know the Lord like they knew the Lord,” he said. “This ministry was shaping my spiritual growth before I even joined.” Kevin joined The Gideons in November 1999 and has never looked back. Aimee became an Auxiliary soon after. She loves serving alongside Kevin. “This is something we can do together as husband and wife. We love traveling for the ministry and seeing all the faithful members across the globe,” said Aimee. “It has also helped us grow spiritually and strengthened our marriage by being surrounded by accountability partners. The closer we grow to God, the closer we will grow together.”

“This is something we can do together as husband and wife…it also has helped us grow spiritually and strengthened our marriage by being surrounded by accountability partners. The closer we grow to God, the closer we will grow together.” –Aimee

In 2003, Kevin helped form a telecommunications company called Communications, Reliability, and Integrity (CRI, now Neos Technology Group) as the managing partner. He was growing in his influence as a Gideon, as well. God was revealing what being more effective for the Kingdom looked like in his life. One moment will forever stand out to Kevin. “We did a school distribution at Sparkman Elementary, and I gave one of the students a Testament. Later that evening, I saw him at a local revival. He ran up to me with his Scripture saying, ‘Mr. Beal, Mr. Beal!’ The potential of what we are doing hit me like a ton of bricks.”

Another defining moment happened at the Anaheim International Convention in 2005. Kevin had watched other Gideons serving in various international roles, and he wanted to do the same. While at the Convention, he asked a Gideon leader what it took to be part of the Association’s international efforts. “I will never forget what he told me… ‘Go back home and be as active as you can be in your camp.’” That was what Kevin did.

Along the way, God continued stretching him in ways he never imagined. For example, he had no intentions of ever being a church speaker, but God had other plans. His pastor asked him to speak at a men’s day at their church. Kevin recalls, “I had never felt God speak through me like that before, and the next week I qualified to be a church speaker with The Gideons.”

New Position, Same Purpose

Kevin’s prayer has always been to surrender to whatever the Lord has for his life. “It always has come back to my role as a Gideon.” This was never more evident to him than when he made the nearly 9,000-mile trip from Hartselle, Alabama, to Thailand for an international Scripture blitz. He was later elected as a zone trustee and that moment also seemed unreal. “Knowing Christ places me in these situations—that allows me to get past all my insecurities,” he says.

At the 2022 International Convention in Grapevine, Texas, Kevin was elected international president of The Gideons International after serving as international vice president and treasurer. He is thrilled God would place him in the role, yet he considers himself an ordinary Gideon. He wants the membership to know more than anything that God has given each member something to do. “Find out what that is and give it everything you’ve got,” says Kevin. “You have a short window of time you can serve—make the most of what you have been given.”

In John 21, Jesus asked Peter three times if he loved Him. Jesus followed this question every time by instructing him to feed His sheep. Kevin believes the calling as a Gideon has a lot of similarities. “In a way, that’s what we do. We enable members to do what they are called to do. Infrastructures and processes are vital to success, but never forget your calling and why we do what we do.”

A long-time favorite passage for the Beal family is Proverbs 3:5-6 (ESV), which reads, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” Today, his son is a middle school history teacher, and his daughter is enrolled at a Christian university. They love spending time together as a family.

Kevin has had a front-row seat for the past 20 years to see life change. He has watched God transform lives using ordinary men and women who love Jesus. Being a Gideon has made him a better follower of Jesus, husband, father, and businessman. One of Aimee’s favorite characteristics of Kevin is a discernment that comes only with a close relationship with the Lord. He knows it is only on our knees, and through the power of God’s Word, that we will be able to discover what God has planned for this Association in the days ahead.

“Find out what [your calling] is and give it everything you've got. You have a short window of time you can serve—make the most of what you have been given.”

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