Why I am a soldier in the Salvation Army (A Writer's Cramp entry) November 26, 2019
Prompt terms: "treasures picked up along the way
as a term of endearment
a performance to be savored"
People ask me all the time "Why do you serve as a soldier in the Salvation Army" and "What is a soldier in the Salvation Army?"
First let me address what a soldier in the Salvation Army is, because these are treasures I've picked up along the way, then I will explain why I am one. A soldier first of all is a Christian. It me it serves as a term of endearment. The Salvation Army was started in London England, when General William Booth left his church and began preaching to people on London's East Side converting them to Christianity. He called his group of converts and army because the Apostle Paul refers to Christians as soldiers. We serve in the army of God and our weapons are spiritual weapons such as salvation and love. See Ephesians 6. It is a performance to be savored.
As soldiers our primary goal is the salvation of souls. We try to meet this goal by meeting the needs of the physical body, thus the social services branch of the Salvation Army. Almost anybody can go to one of our social services offices and obtain food without charge. We offer many other programs that truly are free. We depend on the generosity of the public as moved by the Holy Spirit during our red kettle season which is going on now. If you go to a department store today or on Black Friday and you see a bell ringer standing there near a red kettle, then please donate. Every penny helps and every penny is spent helping the needy. Our paid positions, which are few, are paid a stipend except for our non-member staff. They are paid a salary, but their services are directly aimed at the public. Nobody in the Army is rich.
Why do I serve? I serve as a soldier in the Salvation Army because I believe in the mission of the Salvation Army. The mission of the Salvation Army is the saving of souls. I love people and the Salvation Army gives me the opportunity to serve others. I am a recovered addict and I know that my recovery is the direct result of divine intervention. No human power could ever have broken the grip drugs had on me. As a recovered addict I want to give back and the best way I can give back is through the Salvation Army. As a soldier I signed a covenant or contract between myself and God that I would abstain from all worldly ways and live according to Christian principles. This does not mean I walk on water. The only water I ever walked on was a creek that froze over during the winter. I fell walking on that water so I do not walk on water. I am a much different person than I was though, and I continue to grow each day. A day without the Lord to me would be unimaginable. Even when I do not feel His presence I know He is there because He is not associated with my feelings. Feelings fluctuate, but Jesus is always the same. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8) and does change according to feelings. When I do not feel His presence faith tells me He is there.
God is good and because God is good I am a soldier. I love to serve others and my soldier position allows me to do so.