The Ark of Safety

I was born into a Christian family that loved the Lord and attended church every Sunday. During one service, a minister spoke about the importance of always being with God on the “Ark of Safety.” This message resonated with me in a powerful way. I wanted to be safe and protected by God, just as Noah, his family, and the animals he saved were protected during the great flood.

Since I was a child, I had been having my own conversations with the Lord. But when I turned 22 years old, I confessed every sin to God. I told Him that I would dedicate my life to doing His will in any way He chose. I felt so happy and secure to know that the Lord would guide my every step.

Years later, those steps brought me to the Salvation Army’s Allegheny Valley Corps in Brackenridge, Pa. Anything I could do for the corps, I was ready to serve. I worked with children and I helped in the corps kitchen. Volunteering—my own ark of safety—has always lifted my spirits. I am happy to know that I work for both people on earth and the Lord in Heaven. That understanding makes my soul feel cleansed and healed.

Last June, I began training to become a Salvation Army soldier. The first day I put on the soldier uniform, a beautiful, humbling feeling came over me; another ark of safety in my life. As I entered the Allegheny Valley Corps for the first time as a soldier, I felt God’s eyes on me. The feeling brought tears to my own eyes. It was always His plan for me to come to The Salvation Army. He knew I loved to witness to people, and that I would embrace the soldier’s role of evangelist. When I speak about God, I can feel Him leaving His mark on me.

God left His mark in other ways too. I took guitar lessons so I could play during Sunday services at the corps. I wanted to turn Psalm 90:17, “let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us,” into a song. Doing so would be another way of honoring and speaking to God. My instructor said that he had never seen anyone learn guitar as fast as I had. But it wasn’t me picking it up; it was God in every chord and string.

Sometimes we may not feel that God is interested in speaking to us. If you ever feel like you are struggling to hear Him, take the initiative to speak to Him first. Let Him listen to your requests. If there is sickness or even just sadness in your life, ask Him to fix it. He already knows our needs, but He also wants to hear it directly from our lips. He wants our faith strengthened by talking directly to Him. When we kneel to pray, He hears our words. We feel His presence and His blessings.

I could never fully repay God for every blessing He has given me, but my service as a soldier is the perfect place to start. The Salvation Army is now my ark of safety. Just like God chose Noah to save and be saved, I am honored and humbled to be chosen by God to serve.

by Patty Vrotney

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