Timothy’s story: Grateful to find safety, care, and restoration through The Salvation Army

Jan 6, 2022 | by Brad Rowland

Timothy's story: Grateful to find safety, care, and restoration through The Salvation Army

Editor's Note: Sometimes a person who has lived through it says it best. This letter is from Timothy, who received services from The Salvation Army in Galveston, Texas.

Can I find somewhere safe to sleep? Will my meager possessions be safe? Can I trust those around me to treat me fairly? These thoughts and many more preoccupied my mind from waking until finally falling asleep, usually for just a few hours at a time. Often, I would stay awake all night, preferring exhaustion over the uncertainty of what daybreak would bring.

I knew about the services offered at The Salvation Army, but due to unfortunate past experiences with a shelter in another city, I mentally could not bring myself to seek the help I desperately needed.

Finally, after being physically assaulted twice, I made the decision to place myself at their mercy with the hope and prayer that history would not be repeated. With cap in hand and my body literally quaking, I headed across the island on foot toward the shelter.

As soon as I arrived, I knew my fear and prejudice were unfounded. I was warmly welcomed, given a meal, a bed, and a shower. When I crawled into bed, I had the first full night of sleep that I had experienced in months. Day by day, I found my strength returning. Consecutive nights of sound sleep provided a clarity of thought which had been sorely lacking in my life.

My temper began to abate. My attitude toward life improved. Pitching in to help wherever and whenever needed helped me to reground myself; allowing me to re-embrace character attributes I once held myself to.

One particular thought flooded my mind: Be first to be last.

Five simple words I had been taught by a deeply loved former pastor. Words I had stopped living by that now seemed so important and apt.

Thank you for providing a loving and genuinely caring temporary home for me on this journey of life. By providing a safe and truly loving place, The Salvation Army has helped me reconnect with myself, with others around me and with Jesus. Thank you!

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