Veteran Testimonial by Mrs. DeQuency Bowen
When I joined the United States Army, I was in my early twenties, I had my own apartment, and I was attending college and working full time in NYC. I would have considered myself at that time living as a responsible adult and Life was pretty good. But there was a part of me that wanted to do more in life. I had felt like there was more to life than just being a New Yorker. So I joined the Army and little did I know how much my life would change and little did I know how much my faith would be tested.
The days in basic training were long and the daily training was extremely strenuous. A typical day started before dawn, typically with a 5 mile run, with plenty of pushups and countless sit ups, never ending road marches, dangerous confidence courses, firing M16’s and also physical combat training. There was always some drill sergeants yelling and screaming at soldiers, to keep us soldiers in line. I also remember always waiting in long lines to eat my meals, waiting in long lines to take a shower, waiting in long lines to get the mail, waiting in long lines to make a call home. And to make things even worse, for 8 weeks, I wasn’t even allowed to have a cup coffee. It was a really stressful environment that left me feeling discouraged. I was also very much homesick and I felt like a fish out water. I was also very afraid that with this new challenge in my life that I was going to fail.
But it was in this moment of doubt and within this moment of fear that I chose to move closer to God.
I remember one evening reading my bible before bed, looking for comfort and guidance to help me navigate my difficult situation. I remember reading the book of Joshua Chapter One. I came across Verse 9, it read “Be strong and courageous…for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
The message I received, from that verse, was clear to me. The message was for me to look towards the blessings of God and He will command my steps. This verse helped me understand that I didn’t need to continue wasting my time being stressed out and afraid of the new challenges that were ahead.
With the help of Joshua 1:9, I found a way through that difficult time, to persevere through basic training. I honorably served as a Food Service Specialist for the 47th Field Hospital Unit in Lawton, OK. I am happy to say that from my service I gained many friends, memorable experiences and a wealth of knowledge that helps me be a better leader, a better team player and most of all a better Christian. I am very thankful to have learned how to rely on the strength of God.
by Mrs. DeQuency Bowen/Assistant Food Director at THQ East
PRAYER: We remember today, O God, all those who have served under the colors of their countries. We commend them to you for their bravery, patriotism and honor. Grant that those who serve today may be kept in your love and under your protection. Give comfort and encouragement to their families. We pray for the day when there will be peace on earth and the kingdoms of this world will have become the kingdoms of our Christ. Hasten that day, O God, and help us to live in that hope. Imbue us with your spirit of love and forgiveness, in order that we may understand the nature of Christ’s kingdom. Hear our prayers for our enemies in the world, that they may be converted to Christ’s will for the nations and join us in a better world community. Let your holy will prevail among all people and your name be exalted forever. Amen.